The Cognitive Penetrability of Perception: New Philosophical Perspectives

2016.04.18 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews John Zeimbekis and Athanassios Raftopoulos (eds.), The Cognitive Penetrability of Perception: New Philosophical Perspectives,
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2016.04.18 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews John Zeimbekis and Athanassios Raftopoulos (eds.), The Cognitive Penetrability of Perception: New Philosophical Perspectives, Oxford University Press, 2015, 441pp., $99.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780198738916. Reviewed by Steven Gross, Johns Hopkins University The question of cognitive penetrability concerns, roughly, whether what we think can affect what we perceive -- and, if so, what follows. Suppose one knows that bananas are typically yellow: could that make gray bananas look yellower than they are (Hansen et al. 2006)? Suppose one has a desire for money: could that increase the perceived size of coins (Bruner and Goodman 1947)? If there is cognitive penetration, one might worry -- at least if the penetration proved extensive and significant -- that the distinction between conception and perception might itself collapse; that the perceptual basis for belief might be undermined; or that there might be no. . .

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