•  1319
    Representationalism about Consciousness
    In Uriah Kriegel (ed.), Oxford Handbook of the Philosophy of Consciousness, Oxford University Press. forthcoming.
    Discusses recent work on representationalism, including: the case for a representationalist theory of consciousness, which explains consciousness in terms of content; rivals such as neurobiological type-type identity theory (Papineau, McLaughlin) and naive realism (Allen, Campbell, Brewer); John Campbell and David Papineau's recent objections to representationalism; the problem of the "laws of appearance"; externalist vs internalist versions of representationalism; the relation between represent…Read more
  •  982
    It's not clear what integrated information theorists (Koch, Tononi) are saying. And their view lacks the resources to explain even very rudimentary facts about experiences.
  •  977
    In this paper, I do a few things. I develop a (largely) empirical argument against naïve realism (Campbell, Martin, others) and for representationalism. I answer Papineau’s recent paper “Against Representationalism (about Experience)”. And I develop a new puzzle for representationalists.
  •  759
    The significance argument for the irreducibility of consciousness
    Philosophical Perspectives 31 (1): 349-407. 2017.
    The Significance Argument (SA) for the irreducibility of consciousness is based on a series of new puzzle-cases that I call multiple candidate cases. In these cases, there is a multiplicity of physical-functional properties or relations that are candidates to be identified with the sensible qualities and our consciousness of them, where those candidates are not significantly different. I will argue that these cases show that reductive materialists cannot accommodate the various ways in which con…Read more
  •  594
    A Simple View of Consciousness
    In Robert C. Koons & George Bealer (eds.), The Waning of Materialism, Oxford University Press. pp. 25--66. 2009.
    Phenomenal intentionality is irreducible. Empirical investigation shows it is internally-dependent. So our usual externalist (causal, etc.) theories do not apply here. Internalist views of phenomenal intentionality (e. g. interpretationism) also fail. The resulting primitivist view avoids Papineau's worry that terms for consciousness are highly indeterminate: since conscious properties are extremely natural (despite having unnatural supervenience bases) they are 'reference magnets'.
  •  579
    What Is the Integrated Information Theory of Consciousness?
    Journal of Consciousness Studies 26 (1-2): 1-2. 2019.
    I raise a series of basic question about what the integrated information theory of consciousness comes to.
  •  575
    Does Phenomenology Ground Mental Content?
    In Uriah Kriegel (ed.), Phenomenal Intentionality, Oxford University Press. pp. 194-234. 2013.
    I develop several new arguments against claims about "cognitive phenomenology" and its alleged role in grounding thought content. My arguments concern "absent cognitive qualia cases", "altered cognitive qualia cases", and "disembodied cognitive qualia cases". However, at the end, I sketch a positive theory of the role of phenomenology in grounding content, drawing on David Lewis's work on intentionality. I suggest that within Lewis's theory the subject's total evidence plays the central role in …Read more
  •  451
    Intentionalism and perceptual presence
    Philosophical Perspectives 21 (1): 495-541. 2007.
    H. H. Price (1932) held that experience is essentially presentational. According to Price, when one has an experience of a tomato, nothing can be more certain than that there is something of which one is aware. Price claimed that the same applies to hallucination. In general, whenever one has a visual experience, there is something of which one is aware, according to Price. Call this thesis Item-Awareness
  •  442
    Propositions and Properties
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (2): 478-486. 2016.
  •  432
    I develop a new argument against Russellian Monism about consciousness.
  •  404
    Naive Realism and the Science of Consciousness
    Analytic Philosophy. forthcoming.
    I begin by describing what I call simple naïve realism. Then I describe relevant empirical results. Next, I develop two new empirical arguments against simple naive realism. Then I briefly look at two new, more complex forms of naïve realism: one due to Keith Allen and the other due to Heather Logue and Ori Beck. I argue that they are not satisfactory retreats for naive realists. The right course is to reject naive realism altogether. My stalking horse is contemporary naive realism but there is …Read more
  •  329
    The Interdependence of Phenomenology and Intentionality
    The Monist 91 (2): 250-272. 2008.
    I address a second issue that arises once we accept intentionalism: can intentionalists accept the claim of Horgan and Tienson (among others) that phenomenology is in some sense prior to intentionality? And should they?
  •  320
    Philosophical theories of color divide over two issues. First, there is the issue of Reductionism versus Primitivism. _Reductionism_ holds that colors are identical with physical properties, dispositional properties, or other properties specifiable in non-chromatic terms
  •  305
    What are the contents of experiences
    Philosophical Quarterly 59 (236): 483-507. 2009.
    I address three interrelated issues concerning the contents of experiences. First, I address the preliminary issue of what it means to say that experiences have contents. Then I address the issue of why we should believe that experiences have contents. Finally, I address the issue of what the contents of experiences are.
  •  283
    Do theories of consciousness rest on a mistake?
    Philosophical Issues 20 (1): 333-367. 2010.
    Using empirical research on pain, sound and taste, I argue against the combination of intentionalism about consciousness and a broadly ‘tracking’ psychosemantics of the kind defended by Fodor, Dretske, Hill, Neander, Stalnaker, Tye and others. Then I develop problems with Kriegel and Prinz's attempt to combine a Dretskean psychosemantics with the view that sensible properties are Shoemakerian response-dependent properties. Finally, I develop in detail my own 'primitivist' view of sensory intenti…Read more
  •  242
    Can the physicalist explain colour structure in terms of colour experience?1
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (4). 2006.
    Physicalism about colour is the thesis that colours are identical with response-independent, physical properties of objects. I endorse the Argument from Structure against Physicalism about colour. The argument states that Physicalism cannot accommodate certain obvious facts about colour structure: for instance, that red is a unitary colour while purple is a binary colour, and that blue resembles purple more than green. I provide a detailed formulation of the argument. According to the most popul…Read more
  •  219
    Consciousness and Coincidence: Comments on Chalmers
    Journal of Consciousness Studies (5-6): 143-155. 2020.
    In “The Meta-Problem of Consciousness”, David Chalmers briefly raises a problem about how the connection between consciousness and our verbal and other behavior appears “lucky”. I raise a counterexample to Chalmers’s formulation of the problem. Then I develop an alternative formulation. Finally, I consider some responses, including illusionism about consciousness.
  •  218
    Many favor representationalism about color experience. To a first approximation, this view holds that experiencing is like believing. In particular, like believing, experiencing is a matter of representing the world to be a certain way. Once you view color experience along these lines, you face a big question: do our color experiences represent the world as it really is? For instance, suppose you see a tomato. Representationalists claim that having an experience with this sensory character is ne…Read more
  •  208
    I raise some objections to the theory presented in *Outside Color*.
  •  201
    Colour, philosophical perspectives
    In Axel Cleeremans, Patrick Wilken & Tim Bayne (eds.), Oxford Companion to Consciousness, Oxford University Press. pp. 144-149. 2009.
    An overview of the main positions on colour.
  •  183
    The puzzle of the laws of appearance
    Philosophical Issues 30 (1): 257-272. 2020.
    In this paper I will present a puzzle about visual appearance. There are certain necessary constraints on how things can visually appear. The puzzle is about how to explain them. I have no satisfying solution. My main thesis is simply that the puzzle is a puzzle. I will develop the puzzle as it arises for representationalism about experience because it is currently the most popular theory of experience and I think it is along the right lines. However, everyone faces a form of the puzzle, includi…Read more
  •  180
    The Real Trouble for Armchair Arguments Against Phenomenal Externalism
    In Mark Sprevak & Jesper Kallestrup (eds.), New Waves in Philosophy of Mind, Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 153-181. 2014.
    I criticize some armchair arguments against phenomenal externalism due to Block, Hawthorne, Kriegel, Levine, Shoemaker and others. I conclude by discussing an overlooked armchair argument: the argument from phenomenal localism.
  •  178
    Can disjunctivists explain our access to the sensible world?
    Philosophical Issues 21 (1): 384-433. 2011.
  •  155
    I argue for three claims. First, there is a strong argument for identity physicalism (Lewis, Sider, Dorr) over dualism. It does achieve the physicalist dream of a maximally simple and uniform view of reality. However, there are also strong arguments against identity physicalism concerning the special nature of conscious experiences. Second, although nonidentity "ground" physicalism (Campbell, Johnston, Schaffer) is a possible fallback position, there is no reason to prefer to property dualism. I…Read more
  •  141
    These are some responses to an early version of Johnston's paper "The Personite Problem" (now published in Nous).