The Problem of Perception
Crane (Tim)
Source: Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy, 2005-11
Paper - Abstract

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Author’s Abstract

Sense-perception — the awareness or apprehension of things by sight, hearing, touch, smell and taste — has long been a preoccupation of philosophers. One pervasive and traditional problem, sometimes called “the problem of perception”, is created by the phenomena of perceptual illusion and hallucination: if these kinds of error are possible, how can perception be what it intuitively seems to be, a direct and immediate access to reality? The present entry is about how these possibilities of error challenge the intelligibility of the phenomenon of perception, and how the major theories of perception in the last century are best understood as responses to this challenge.

  1. The Problem of Perception
    … 1.1 Introduction
    … 1.2 The Argument from Illusion
    … 1.3 The Argument from Hallucination
  2. The Sources of the Problem
    … 2.1 The Ordinary Conception of Perceptual Experience
    … … 2.1.1 The Objects of Experience
    … … 2.1.2 Perceptual Presence
    … … 2.1.3 The Transparency of Experience
    … … 2.1.4 Vision and the Other Senses
    … 2.2 Illusion and Hallucination
  3. Theories of Perception
    … 3.1 The Sense-Datum Theory
    … … 3.1.1 Indirect Realism and Phenomenalism
    … … 3.1.2 Objections to the Sense-Datum Theory
    … 3.2 The Adverbial Theory
    … … 3.2.1 The Adverbial Theory and Qualia
    … … 3.2.2 Objections to the Adverbial Theory
    … 3.3 The Intentionalist Theory
    … … 3.3.1 The Sources of the Intentionalist Theory
    … … 3.3.2 The Intentional Content of Perceptual Experience
    … … 3.3.3 Objections to the Intentionalist Theory
    … 3.4 The Disjunctivist1 Theory
    … … 3.4.1 Motivations for Disjunctivism2
    … … 3.4.2 Objections to Disjunctivism3
    Bibliography
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Comment:

First published Tue Mar 8, 2005; substantive revision Fri Feb 4, 2011; see Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Archive: The Problem of Perception.

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