Journal of Consciousness Studies 23 (7-8):23-64 (2016)

Fabian Dorsch
PhD: University College London; Last affiliation: Université de Fribourg
Relationalism about perception minimally claims that instances of perception -- in contrast to instances of hallucination -- are constituted by the external objects perceived. Most variants of relationalism furthermore maintain that this difference in constitution is due to a difference in mental kind. One prominent example is acquaintance relationalism, which argues that perceptions are relational in virtue of acquainting us with external objects. I distinguish three variants of acquaintance relationalism -- which differ in their answers to the question of which kind of awareness hallucinations involve -- and object to all of them on two main grounds. First, none of the variants can explain how hallucinations can be introspectively indistinguishable from perceptions, despite their essential difference in awareness. Second, all three variants are unable to identify the feature of hallucinations that ensure that these experiences possess the same motivational power as corresponding perceptions. Since aquaintance relationalism can satisfy neither of these two desiderata on relationalist views, it should be rejected. Hence, if we want to be relationalists about perception, we should endorse a form of relationalism that treats perceptions -- as well as hallucinations -- as representational.
Keywords relationalism  perception  hallucination  phenomenal character  representationalism
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References found in this work BETA

The Transparency of Experience.Michael G. F. Martin - 2002 - Mind and Language 17 (4):376-425.
What is It Like to Be a Bat?Thomas Nagel - 2004 - In Tim Crane & Katalin Farkas (eds.), Metaphysics: A Guide and Anthology. Oxford University Press.
Why Explain Visual Experience in Terms of Content?Adam Pautz - 2010 - In Bence Nanay (ed.), Perceiving the World. Oxford University Press. pp. 254--309.
Self-Knowing Agents.Lucy O'Brien - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
Veridical Hallucination and Prosthetic Vision.David Lewis - 1980 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 58 (3):239-249.

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A Disjunctive Account of Desire.Kael McCormack - 2022 - Dissertation, University of New South Wales
Desire-Based Theories of Reasons and the Guise of the Good.Kael McCormack - forthcoming - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy.

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