•  377
    Perception and Iconic Memory: What Sperling Doesn't Show
    Mind and Language 26 (4): 381-411. 2011.
    Philosophers have lately seized upon Sperling's partial report technique and subsequent work on iconic memory in support of controversial claims about perceptual experience, in particular that phenomenology overflows cognitive access. Drawing on mounting evidence concerning postdictive perception, I offer an interpretation of Sperling's data in terms of cue-sensitive experience which fails to support any such claims. Arguments for overflow based on change-detection paradigms (e.g. Landman et al.…Read more
  •  266
    Perceiving temporal properties
    European Journal of Philosophy 18 (2): 176-202. 2010.
    Philosophers have long struggled to understand our perceptual experience of temporal properties such as succession, persistence and change. Indeed, strikingly, a number have felt compelled to deny that we enjoy such experience. Philosophical puzzlement arises as a consequence of assuming that, if one experiences succession or temporal structure at all, then one experiences it at a moment. The two leading types of theory of temporal awareness—specious present theories and memory theories—are best…Read more
  •  185
    No new argument against the existence requirement
    with Andrew McCarthy
    Analysis 66 (1). 2006.
    Yagisawa (2005) considers two old arguments against the existence requirement. Both arguments are significantly less appealing than Yagisawa suggests. In particular, the second argument, first given by Kaplan (1989: 498), simply assumes that existence is contingent (§1). Yagisawa’s ‘new’ argument shares this weakness. It also faces a dilemma. Yagisawa must either treat ‘at @’ as a sentential operator occupying the same grammatical position as ‘∼’ or as supplying an extra argument place. In the for…Read more
  •  167
    Austerity and Illusion
    Philosophers' Imprint 20 (15): 1-19. 2020.
    Many contemporary theorists charge that naïve realists are incapable of accounting for illusions. Various sophisticated proposals have been ventured to meet this charge. Here, we take a different approach and dispute whether the naïve realist owes any distinctive account of illusion. To this end, we begin with a simple, naïve account of veridical perception. We then examine the case that this account cannot be extended to illusions. By reconstructing an explicit version of this argument, we show…Read more
  •  159
    Experience of and in Time
    Philosophy Compass 9 (2): 131-144. 2014.
    How must experience of time be structured in time? In particular, does the following principle, which I will call inheritance, hold: for any temporal property apparently presented in perceptual experience, experience itself has that same temporal property. For instance, if I hear Paul McCartney singing ‘Hey Jude’, must my auditory experience of the ‘Hey’ itself precede my auditory experience of the ‘Jude’, or can the temporal order of these experiences come apart from the order the words are exp…Read more
  •  157
    Consciousness and Criterion: On Block's Case for Unconscious Seeing
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (2): 419-451. 2016.
    Block () highlights two experimental studies of neglect patients which, he contends, provide ‘dramatic evidence’ for unconscious seeing. In Block's hands this is the highly non-trivial thesis that seeing of the same fundamental kind as ordinary conscious seeing can occur outside of phenomenal consciousness. Block's case for it provides an excellent opportunity to consider a large body of research on clinical syndromes widely held to evidence unconscious perception. I begin by considering in deta…Read more
  •  135
    Breaking the silence: motion silencing and experience of change
    Philosophical Studies 168 (3): 693-707. 2014.
    The naïve view of temporal experience (Phillips, in: Lloyd D, Arstila V (eds) Subjective time: the philosophy, psychology, and neuroscience of temporality, forthcoming-a) comprises two claims. First, that we are perceptually aware of temporal properties, such as succession and change. Second, that for any temporal property apparently presented in experience, our experience itself possesses that temporal property. In his paper ‘Silencing the experience of change’ (forthcoming), Watzl argues that …Read more
  •  129
    Experience and time
    Dissertation, UCL. 2009.
    We are no less directly acquainted with the temporal structure of the world than with its spatial structure. We hear one word succeeding another; feel two taps as simultaneous; or see the glow of a firework persisting, before it finally fizzles and fades. However, time is special, for we not only experience temporal properties; experience itself is structured in time. Part One articulates a natural framework for thinking about experience in time. I claim (i) that experience in its experiential a…Read more
  •  115
    15 Hearing and Hallucinating Silence
    In Fiona Macpherson & Dimitris Platchias (eds.), Hallucination, Mit Press. pp. 333. 2013.
    Tradition has it that, although we experience darkness, we can neither hear nor hallucinate silence. At most, we hear that it is silent, in virtue of lacking auditory experience. This cognitive view is at odds with our ordinary thought and talk. Yet it is not easy to vouchsafe the perception of silence: Sorensen‘s recent account entails the implausible claim that the permanently and profoundly deaf are perpetually hallucinating silence. To better defend the view that we can genuinely hear and ha…Read more
  •  113
    Indiscriminability and experience of change
    Philosophical Quarterly 61 (245). 2011.
    It is obvious both that some changes are too small for us to perceive and that we can perceive constant motion. Yet according to Fara, these two facts are in conflict, and one must be rejected. I show that conflict arises only from accepting a `zoëtrope conception' of change experience, according to which change experience is analysed in terms of a series of very short-lived sensory atoms, each lacking in dynamic content. On pain of denying the phenomenologically obvious, we must reject the zoët…Read more
  •  113
    Experience and Intentional Content
    Dissertation, Oxford University. 2005.
    Strong or Pure Intentionalism is the claim that the phenomenal character of any perceptual experience can be exhaustively characterized solely by reference to its Intentional content. Strong or Pure Anti-Intentionalism is the claim that the phenomenal character of any perceptual experience can be exhaustively characterized solely by reference to its non-Intentional properties. In Chapters One and Two, I consider how best to delineate the opposition between these positions. I reject various chara…Read more
  •  108
    Rate abuse: A reply to Olson
    Analysis 69 (3): 503-505. 2009.
    Olson (2009) argues that time does not pass because (i) if it did it would have to pass at some rate, and (ii) there is no rate at which it could pass. This paper exposes a confusion about the nature of rates upon which this argument rests.
  •  94
    Sidney Morgenbesser brought to attention cases of the following form: (MC1) Chump tosses an indeterministic coin and, whilst it is in mid-air, calls heads. The coin lands tails, and Chump loses. His betting was causally independent of the coin’s fall. Chump seems right to say: ‘If I had bet tails, I would have won.’1 (MC2).
  •  92
    Naive Realism and the Science of (Some) Illusions
    Philosophical Topics 44 (2): 353-380. 2016.
    Critics have long complained that naive realism cannot adequately account for perceptual illusion. This complaint has a tendency to ally itself with the aspersion that naive realism is hopelessly out of touch with vision science. Here I offer a partial reply to both complaint and aspersion. I do so by showing how careful reflection on a simple, empirically grounded model of illusion reveals heterodox ways of thinking about familiar illusions which are quite congenial to the naive realist.
  •  89
    Stuck in the closet: a reply to Ahmed
    Analysis 71 (1): 86-91. 2011.
    (No abstract is available for this citation)
  •  85
    Unconscious Perception Reconsidered
    Analytic Philosophy 59 (4): 471-514. 2018.
    Most contemporary theorists regard the traditional thesis that perception is essentially conscious as just another armchair edict to be abandoned in the wake of empirical discovery. Here I reconsider this dramatic departure from tradition. My aim is not to recapture our prelapsarian confidence that perception is inevitably conscious (though much I say might be recruited to that cause). Instead, I want to problematize the now ubiquitous belief in unconscious perception. The paper divides into two…Read more
  •  84
    Robin le poidevin the images of time: An essay on temporal representation
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (2): 439-446. 2009.
  •  80
    No watershed for overflow: Recent work on the richness of consciousness
    Philosophical Psychology 29 (2): 236-249. 2016.
    A familiar and enduring controversy surrounds the question of whether our phenomenal experience “overflows” availability to cognition: do we consciously see more than we can remember and report? Both sides to this debate have long sought to move beyond naïve appeals to introspection by providing empirical evidence for or against overflow. Recently, two notable studies—Bronfman, Brezis, Jacobson, and Usher and Vandenbroucke, Sligte, Fahrenfort, Ambroziak, and Lamme —have purported to provide comp…Read more
  •  76
    Attention and Iconic Memory
    In Christopher Mole, Declan Smithies and W. & Wayne Wu (eds.), Attention: Philosophical and Psychological Essays, Oxford University Press. 2011.
    Orthodox interpretations of Sperling‘s partial report paradigm support the idea that there is substantially more in our streams of consciousness than we can attend to or recall. I propose an alternative, postdictive interpretation which fails to support any such conclusion. This account is defended at greater length in my ‗Perception and iconic memory‘. Here I focus on the role ascribed to attention by the rival interpretations. I argue that orthodox accounts fail to assign a plausible role to a…Read more
  •  73
    Attention to the passage of time
    Philosophical Perspectives 26 (1): 277-308. 2012.
  •  72
    Cetacean semantics: A reply to Sainsbury
    Analysis 74 (3): 379-382. 2014.
    Sainsbury argues that the nineteenth century case of Maurice v. Judd, in which the jury apparently ruled that whales are fish, presents a paradox whose ‘resolution will require carefully formulated metasemantic principles’ (2014: 5). I argue that Sainsbury misconstrues what is fundamentally at issue in the court room. The substantive disagreement (and so verdict) does not concern whether whales are fish but rather the intended meaning of the phrase ‘fish oil’ as employed in a statute authorizing…Read more
  •  68
    Review of Matthew Nudds & Casey O’Callaghan, 'Sounds & Perception: New Philosophical Essays' (review)
    Journal of Consciousness Studies 17 (9-10): 245-248. 2010.
    A Martian reading contemporary work on perception might be forgiven for thinking that humans had only one sense: vision. Witness the title of one popular recent collection: Vision and mind: selected readings in the philosophy of perception. Our obsession with sight is stifling. It leads to distorted vision-based models of the other senses, and it means that the distinctive puzzles raised by non-visual modalities are routinely neglected. With this pioneering and long-overdue collection of essays …Read more
  •  63
    XII—Perceiving the Passing of Time
    Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 113 (3pt3): 225-252. 2013.
    Duration distortions familiar from trauma present an apparent counterexample to what we might call the naive view of duration perception. I argue that such distortions constitute a counterexample to naiveté only on the assumption that we perceive duration absolutely. This assumption can seem mandatory if we think of the alternative, relative view as limiting our awareness to the relative durations of perceptually presented events. However, once we recognize the constant presence of a stream of n…Read more
  •  55
    I develop a seeming antinomy in relation to the question, Do natural kind properties, strictly speaking, characterize the phenomenology of experience? Or, in Peacockean terms, Are natural kind concepts observational? On the one hand, naïve descriptions of experience are rich descriptions, often characterizing our experience in terms of the presence of natural kinds. Thus, negative answers to such questions falsify how our experience seems to us. On the other hand, attributing rich contents to ex…Read more
  •  42
  •  40
    A wealth of cases – most notably blindsight and priming under inattention or suppression – have convinced philosophers and scientists alike that perception occurs outside awareness. In recent work, I dispute this consensus, arguing that any putative case of unconscious perception faces a dilemma. The dilemma divides over how absence of awareness is established. If subjective reports are used, we face the problem of the criterion: the concern that such reports underestimate conscious experience. …Read more
  •  34
    How should the Na¨ıve Realist who eschews representational percep- tual content account for illusions? Bill Brewer has recently proposed that illusions should be treated solely in terms of post-experiential misjudgement
  •  30
    Scepticism about Unconscious Perception is the Default Hypothesis
    Journal of Consciousness Studies 28 (3-4): 186-205. 2021.
    Berger and Mylopoulos (2019) critique recent scepticism about unconscious perception, focusing on experimental work from Peters and Lau, and theoretical work of my own. Central to their wide-ranging discussion is the claim that unconscious perception occupies a default status within both experimental and folk psychology. Here, I argue to the contrary that a conscious-perception-only model should be our default. Along the way, I offer my own analysis of Peters and Lau's study, assess the folk psy…Read more