Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 325–346 | Cite as

Ambiguous figures and the spatial contents of perceptual experience: a defense of representationalism

Article

Abstract

Representationalists hold that the phenomenal character of a perceptual experience is identical with, or supervenes on, an aspect of its representational content. As such, representationalism could be disproved by a counter-example consisting of two experiences that have the same representational content but differ in phenomenal character. In this paper, I discuss two recently proposed counter-examples to representationalism that involve ambiguous or reversible figures. I pursue two goals. My first, and most important, goal is to show that the representationalist can offer plausible responses to both counter-examples. My second goal is to show the implications of these responses for the nature of the spatial representational contents of perceptual experiences.

Keywords

Perceptual experience Representationalism Spatial representational content Mach figure 

Notes

Acknowledgments

I want to thank the two reviewers for this journal. Their comments helped me to improve the paper greatly.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyThe University of GeorgiaAthensUSA

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