Mind Network Workshop

European Research Institute building (Pritchatts Road) - Room G52
Arts and Law, Research
Tuesday 13th December 2011 (11:00-18:00)

For more information, please see the Mind Network website, or contact the local organizer, Darragh Byrne.

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The Mind Network comprises a group of researchers aiming to promote philosophy of mind and cognitive science. Participants get together to present papers, discuss their work, and get to know each other in a friendly and informal setting - approximately once per semester. Previous workshops have been held at the universities of Oxford, Cambridge and Warwick.

All are welcome to attend - PG students especially welcome.

There is no registration fee, but if you'd like to get involved, please register before 1st December by sending an email to the local organiser: Darragh Byrne (d.byrne@bham.ac.uk).


Speakers at the Dec. 13 workshop:



European Research Institute building (ERI)
Pritchatts Road - G3 on this campus map



 10.30-11.00 Coffee  ERI Foyer
 11.00-12.45 Joel Smith
Mindreading and Visual Presence
 ERI G51
 12.45-2.00 Lunch University House, 1st floor
(R23 on campus map
 2.00-3.45 Heather Logue
Why Naive Realism?
 ERI G51
 3.45-4.15 Coffee  ERI Foyer
 4.15-6.00 Katrin Glüer-Pagin
Phenomenal Contents for Perceptual Experiences
 ERI G51
 6.00-7.00 Drinks Staff House bar
(R23 on the campus map)
7.30- Dinner Tba






Joel Smith: Mindreading and Visual Presence
I discuss perceptual accounts of mindreading, according to which some of our knowledge of others’ mental states is perceptual knowledge. I argue that views such as that set out by Dretske and Cassam cannot respect a plausible phenomenological constraint on such accounts. I suggest that we need to pursue a view that incorporates certain claims about the way people look. The view proposed relies on a distinction between basic and non-basic looks.

Heather Logue: Why Naive Realism?
Much of the discussion of Naive Realism about veridical experience has focused on a consequence of adopting it—namely, disjunctivism. However, the motivations for being a Naive Realist in the first place have received relatively little attention in the literature. In the first part of the paper, I will criticise the arguments for Naive Realism offered by M.G.F. Martin, John Campbell, and (some exegetes of) John McDowell. In the second part, I will elaborate and defend a motivation lurking in the work of Mark Johnston and made explicit by William Fish, to the effect that Naive Realism dissolves at least one of the “hard problems” of consciousness. 

Katrin Glüer-Pagin:
Phenomenal Contents for Perceptual Experiences
I have argued that perceptual experience is a (peculiar) kind of belief. The doxastic account of experience I suggest further construes the contents of experience as ‘phenomenal’. Visual phenomenal contents, for instance, are contents of the form ‘x looks F’ or ‘It looks as if Fx’, where F is suitably sensible and ‘looks’ is construed phenomenally. Such contents ascribe ‘phenomenal properties’ to ordinary material objects.

    In this talk, I shall investigate two connected worries about phenomenal contents. The first worry is that experiential contents are not ‘looks-indexed’, i.e. that the way things look does not determine any content for the relevant experience (Travis 2004). Prima facie, this would seem as much of a problem for an account of experience working with phenomenal contents as for any other account according to which perceptual experience has representational content. I shall argue that this is false; properly construed, the way things (phenomenally) look does determine experience content—if this content is construed phenomenally. 

    The second worry is that phenomenal properties might nevertheless not be suitable for experiential content (Chalmers 2004, Brogaard 2010): Phenomenal properties are patently subject-relative. Experiential contents involving such properties cannot even be shared across phenomenal duplicates. Moreover, the complexity of such properties falsifies the phenomenology of experience. I shall argue that these objections lose their force if we construe the subject-relativity of the phenomenal properties represented in experience on the model of unarticulated constituents.