Author: Natsoulas, Thomas
Affiliation: U California, Dept of Psychology, Davis, CA, USA
Title: A rediscovery of presence.
Source: Journal of Mind & Behavior, 1999 Win, 1999. 20 (1): p.17-42
Language: English
Subjects: Thesaurus terms: Experiences (Events) Phenomenology
Added Keywords: W. Sellars & phenomenology of experienced presence
Classification Code: Philosophy (2630)
Abstract: When we see Wilfrid Sellars's favorite object, an ice cube pink through and through, we see the very pinkness of it. Inner awareness of our visual experience finds the ice cube to be experientially present, not merely representationally present to our consciousness. Its pinkness and other properties are present not merely metaphorically, not merely in the sense that the experience represents or is an occurrent belief in the ice cube's being there before us. Despite his behavioristic inclinations, Sellars acknowledges experiential presence and gives an account of it in terms of a perceptual experience's having two intrinsic components, a sensation and a conceptual response to the sensation that ultimately refers to the sensation although it normally takes the sensation for the environmental item that produced it. Problems with Sellars's account include the inadequacy of the causal and referential relations postulated between the two components of a perceptual experience, and the experimentally demonstrated fact (A. Michotte et al, 1964/1991) that, although sensations may be necessary for perceptual experience, experiential presence of a particular environmental property does not always require corresponding sensations. ((c) 1999 APA/PsycINFO, all rights reserved)