Grazer Philosophische Studien 98 (4):544–560 (2021)

Menno Lievers
Utrecht University
Menno Lievers
Utrecht University
Michael Ayers’s Knowing and Seeing: Groundwork for a New Empiricism is a rich and detailed development of two ideas. The first is that perception presents reality to us directly in a perspicuous way. We thus acquire primary knowledge of the world: “knowledge gained by being evidently, self-consciously, in direct cognitive contact with the object of the knowledge.” (Ayers 2019, 63) The second idea is that concepts are not needed in perception. In this article, the author examines Ayers’s view. The author proceeds as follows: In the first section, he identifies the target of Ayers’s attacks, conceptualism. He then describes why many philosophers have felt this conceptualist view to be attractive. In the next section, he discusses Ayers’s criticisms of conceptualism in an attempt to disentangle these criticisms from the statement of his positive view, which the author discusses in the following section. He ends by describing some problems for Ayers’s positive position that are, so he argues, the result of his vehement opposition to conceptualism.
Keywords perception – knowledge – belief – conceptualism
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References found in this work BETA

The Language of Thought.Jerry A. Fodor - 1975 - Harvard University Press.
Knowledge and its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Oxford University Press.
Origins of Objectivity.Tyler Burge - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
Knowledge and its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 64 (1):200-201.
Knowledge and Its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2003 - Philosophical Quarterly 53 (210):105-116.

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