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Does Perception Have Content?$
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Berit Brogaard

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199756018

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199756018.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 08 May 2021

Affordances and the Contents of Perception*

Affordances and the Contents of Perception*

(p.51) 3 Affordances and the Contents of Perception*
Does Perception Have Content?

Susanna Siegel

Oxford University Press

J. J. Gibson invented the word “affordance” to denote possibilities of action for a creature. It is controversial whether any affordances are perceptually salient. This chapter assumes that some are and focuses on affordances that are salient, not just as possible actions that might happen or might not, but instead as necessities or mandates. Experiences of such affordances are experienced mandates, and they are natural candidates for challenging the thesis that all perceptual experiences have contents (the Content View), where contents are a kind of accuracy condition. On the surface, experienced mandates are more like drives than beliefs and they can seem not to require representation to play their role in the subject’s cognitive life. As against these suggestions, this chapter argues that experienced mandates have contents and use a notion of answerability to identify contents that reflect their drive-like character.

Keywords:   perception, affordances, contents, representation, consciousness

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