, Volume 36, Issue 2, pp 331–342 | Cite as

Property-Awareness and Representation

  • Ivan V. Ivanov


Is property-awareness constituted by representation or not? If it were, merely being aware of the qualities of physical objects would involve being in a representational state. This would have considerable implications for a prominent view of the nature of successful perceptual experiences. According to naïve realism, any such experience—or more specifically its character—is fundamentally a relation of awareness to concrete items in the environment. Naïve realists take their view to be a genuine alternative to representationalism, the view on which the character of such experiences is constituted by representation. But naïve realists must admit qualities or property instances as items of awareness if they are to remain wedded to common sense, and the nature of property-awareness may smuggle constitutive representation into the naïve realist account of character. I argue that whether property-awareness involves representation, and consequently whether naïve realism is distinct from representationalism or not, depends on what qualities are fundamentally. On universalist and nominalist accounts, property-awareness turns out to involve representation. Not so under tropism.


Naïve realism Representationalism Property-awareness Properties Universals Tropes Nominalism The argument from appearing 


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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of WarwickCoventryUK

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