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Kant, Science, and Human Nature$
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Robert Hanna

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199285549

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199285549.001.0001

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Direct Perceptual Realism II: Non‐Conceptual Content

Direct Perceptual Realism II: Non‐Conceptual Content

(p.81) 2 Direct Perceptual Realism II: Non‐Conceptual Content
Kant, Science, and Human Nature

Robert Hanna (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the ‘direct’ aspect of direct perceptual realism, and in particular, Kant's theory of non-conceptual perceptual content. A cognition is direct in the Kantian sense if and only if it refers ‘immediately’ (unmittelbar) to an object, and in turn, a cognition refers immediately to an object if and only if it is non-epistemic (belief-independent), non-conceptual (concept-independent), and otherwise unmediated (in the sense that it does not, or at least need not, refer by means of any other sort of representational faculty, representational content, psychological intermediary, or physical intermediary). Since all beliefs intrinsically contain concepts, then non-conceptuality is both necessary and sufficient for a cognition's being non-epistemic. It is argued that non-conceptuality is also both necessary and sufficient for a perception's being otherwise unmediated. Thus, non-conceptuality is both necessary and sufficient for the directness of perception.

Keywords:   direct perceptual realism, non-conceptual perceptual content, cognition

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