• Perceptual Knowledge, Discrimination, and Closure
    Erkenntnis 1-18. forthcoming.
    Carter and Pritchard (2016) and Pritchard (2010, 2012, 2016) have tried to reconcile the intuition that perceptual knowledge requires only limited discriminatory abilities with the closure principle. To this end, they have introduced two theoretical innovations: a contrast between two ways of introducing error-possibilities and a distinction between discriminating and favoring evidence. I argue that their solution faces the “sufficiency problem”: it is unclear whether the evidence that is normal…Read more
  • Epistemology without concepts? (review)
    Metascience 27 (1): 117-121. 2018.
    Review of Penelope Maddy, What Do Philosophers Do? Skepticism and the Practice of Philosophy (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2017, 248 pp.)
  • Emotional Justification
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. forthcoming.
    Theories of emotional justification investigate the conditions under which emotions are epistemically justified or unjustified. I make three contributions to this research program. First, I show that we can generalize some familiar epistemological concepts and distinctions to emotional experiences. Second, I use these concepts and distinctions to display the limits of the ‘simple view’ of emotional justification. On this approach, the justification of emotions stems only from the contents of the…Read more
  • Visual Reference and Iconic Content
    Philosophy of Science 84 (4): 761-781. 2017.
    Evidence from cognitive science supports the claim that humans and other animals see the world as divided into objects. Although this claim is widely accepted, it remains unclear whether the mechanisms of visual reference have representational content or are directly instantiated in the functional architecture. I put forward a version of the former approach that construes object files as icons for objects. This view is consistent with the evidence that motivates the architectural account, can re…Read more
  • McDowell's Conceptualist Therapy for Skepticism
    European Journal of Philosophy 19 (3): 357-386. 2011.
    Abstract: In Mind and World, McDowell conceives of the content of perceptual experiences as conceptual. This picture is supposed to provide a therapy for skepticism, by showing that empirical thinking is objectively and normatively constrained. The paper offers a reconstruction of McDowell's view and shows that the therapy fails. This claim is based on three arguments: 1) the identity conception of truth he exploits is unable to sustain the idea that perception-judgment transitions are normally …Read more
  • Explaining Reference: A Plea for Semantic Psychologism
    In Julien Dutant, Davide Fassio & Anne Meylan (eds.), Liber Amicorum Pascal Engel, University of Geneva. pp. 550-580. 2014.
    ‘Modest’ and ‘full-blooded’ conceptions of meaning disagree on whether we should try to provide explanations of reference. In this paper, I defend a psychological brand of the full-blooded program. As I understand it, there are good reasons to provide a psychological explanation of referential abilities. This explanation is to be framed at an intermediary level of description between the personal level and the explanations provided by neuroscience. My defense of this program has two parts: First…Read more
  • Is Perception a Source of Reasons?
    Theoria 79 (1): 22-56. 2013.
    It is widely assumed that perception is a source of reasons (SR). There is a weak sense in which this claim is trivially true: even if one characterizes perception in purely causal terms, perceptual beliefs originate from the mind's interaction with the world. When philosophers argue for (SR), however, they have a stronger view in mind: they claim that perception provides pre- or non-doxastic reasons for belief. In this article I examine some ways of developing this view and criticize them. I ex…Read more
  • Object Files, Properties, and Perceptual Content
    Review of Philosophy and Psychology 7 (2): 283-307. 2016.
    Object files are mental representations that enable perceptual systems to keep track of objects as numerically the same. How is their reference fixed? A prominent approach, championed by Zenon Pylyshyn and John Campbell, makes room for a non-satisfactional use of properties to fix reference. This maneuver has enabled them to reconcile a singularist view of reference with the intuition that properties must play a role in reference fixing. This paper examines Campbell’s influential defense of this…Read more
  • Epistemic Responsibility and Perceptual Experience
    In David Lauer, Christophe Laudou, Robin Celikates & Georg W. Bertram (eds.), Expérience Et Réflexivité: Perspectives au-Delà de L’Empirisme Et de L’Idéalisme, L'harmattan. 2011.
    Any theory of perceptual experience should elucidate the way humans exploit it in activities proper to responsible agents, like justifying and revising their beliefs. In this paper I examine the hypothesis that this capacity requires the positing of a perceptual awareness involving a pre-doxastic actualization of concepts. I conclude that this hypothesis is neither necessary nor sufficient to account for empirical rationality. This leaves open the possibility to introduce a doxastic account, acc…Read more
  • Indexing the World? Visual Tracking, Modularity, and the Perception–Cognition Interface
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 67 (1): 215-245. 2016.
    Research in vision science, developmental psychology, and the foundations of cognitive science has led some theorists to posit referential mechanisms similar to indices. This hypothesis has been framed within a Fodorian conception of the early vision module. The article shows that this conception is mistaken, for it cannot handle the ‘interface problem’—roughly, how indexing mechanisms relate to higher cognition and conceptual thought. As a result, I reject the inaccessibility of early vision to…Read more
  • How to undercut radical skepticism
    Philosophical Studies 174 (5): 1299-1321. 2017.
    Radical skepticism relies on the hypothesis that one could be completely cut off from the external world. In this paper, I argue that this hypothesis can be rationally motivated by means of a conceivability argument. Subsequently, I submit that this conceivability argument does not furnish a good reason to believe that one could be completely cut off from the external world. To this end, I show that we cannot adequately conceive scenarios that verify the radical skeptical hypothesis. Attempts to…Read more
  • Illusions of Optimal Motion, Relationism, and Perceptual Content
    Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (S1): 146-173. 2017.
    Austere relationism rejects the orthodox analysis of hallucinations and illusions as incorrect perceptual representations. In this article, I argue that illusions of optimal motion present a serious challenge for this view. First, I submit that austere-relationist accounts of misleading experiences cannot be adapted to account for IOMs. Second, I show that any attempt at elucidating IOMs within an austere-relationist framework undermines the claim that perceptual experiences fundamentally involv…Read more