Grounding Perceptual Dogmatism: What are Perceptual Seemings?

Southern Journal of Philosophy 53 (2):196-215 (2015)
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Perceptual Dogmatism holds that if it perceptually seems to S that p, then S has immediate prima facie justification for the belief that p. Various philosophers have made the notion of a perceptual seeming more precise by distinguishing perceptual seemings from both sensations and beliefs to accommodate a) the epistemic difference between perceptual judgments of novices and experts, and, b) the problem of the speckled hen. Using somewhat different terminology, perceptual seemings are supposed to be high-level percepts instead of low-level sensations. I argue that although it is right that perceptual seemings should not be identified with sensations, they should also not be identified with percepts. There is no strong reason to assume that sensations and percepts exist as separate conscious states, and it appears therefore best to identify perceptual seemings simply with perceptual experiences interpreted as entities incorporating aspects from both sensations and percepts. However, even with this plausible identification in hand, the speckled hen will remain problematic for PD.



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Harmen Ghijsen
Radboud University

References found in this work

Perceiving: A Philosophical Study.Roderick M. Chisholm - 1957 - Ithaca,: Cornell University Press.
Skepticism and the Veil of Perception.Michael Huemer (ed.) - 2001 - Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield.
The skeptic and the dogmatist.James Pryor - 2000 - Noûs 34 (4):517–549.
Compassionate phenomenal conservatism.Michael Huemer - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (1):30–55.
Perception and Basic Beliefs: Zombies, Modules and the Problem of the External World.Jack C. Lyons - 2009 - New York, US: Oxford University Press. Edited by Jack Lyons.

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