Naïve realism: a simple approach
Naïve realism is often characterized, by its proponents and detractors alike, as the view that for a subject to undergo a perceptual experience is for her to stand in a simple two-place acquaintance relation toward an object. However, two of the leading defenders of naïve realism, John Campbell and Bill Brewer, have thought it necessary to complicate this picture, claiming that a third relatum is needed to account for various possible differences between distinct visual experiences of the same object (for example, differences that result from changes in the object’s spatial orientation relative to the subject, or from changes in the intensity with which the subject focuses her attention on the object). This, I argue, is a mistake. Once it is acknowledged that a subject’s visual experience acquaints her with more than just a single object, all of the relevant facts can be explained from within the simpler naïve realist framework.
KeywordsPerception Visual experience Naïve realism
- Armstrong, D. M. (1968). A materialist theory of the mind. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
- Campbell, J. (2009). Consciousness and reference. In B. P. McLaughlin, A. Beckermann, & S. Walter (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of philosophy of mind (pp. 648–662). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Crane, T., & French, C. (2017). The problem of perception. In E. N. Zalta (ed.). The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Spring 2017 Edition). https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/spr2017/entries/perception-problem/.
- Lycan, W. (1996). Consciousness and experience. Cambridge: The MIT Press.Google Scholar
- McDowell, J. (1982). Criteria, defeasibility, and knowledge. Proceedings of the British Academy, 68, 455–479.Google Scholar