Is perception inadequate? Husserl's case for non‐sensory objectual phenomenology in perception

European Journal of Philosophy 30 (2):755-777 (2022)
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Abstract

One key difference between perceptual experience and thought is the distinctly sensory way perception presents things to us. Some philosophers nevertheless suggest this sensory phenomenal character does not exhaust the way things are made manifest to us in perceptual experience. Edmund Husserl maintains that there is also a significant non‐sensory side to perception's phenomenal character. We may experience, for instance, an object's facing surface in a sensory mode and, as part of the same perceptual experience, also that object's out‐of‐view surface in a non‐sensory mode. To the extent that perceptual experience makes things available to us in a non‐sensory mode, Husserl calls it inadequate. Here, I reconstruct four arguments for the conclusion that perceptual experience is inadequately found in various of Husserl's writings and critically evaluated them. My aim is both to showcase the variety and sophistication of Husserl's reasons for thinking perceptual experience is inadequate and to problematize that idea.

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Matt Bower
Texas State University

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References found in this work

The intrinsic quality of experience.Gilbert Harman - 1990 - Philosophical Perspectives 4:31-52.
Logical Investigations.Edmund Husserl & J. N. Findlay - 1972 - Journal of Philosophy 69 (13):384-398.
What’s so Transparent about Transparency?Amy Kind - 2003 - Philosophical Studies 115 (3):225-244.

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