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【関連イベント】Merleau-Ponty and the disjunctive conception of appearances



Speaker: Rasmus Thybo Jensen, University of Tokyo

Date & Time: Friday Nov. 6, 2015, 16:00-17:30
Venue: The University of Tokyo Komaba I Campus, Bldg. #14, 7th Floor, Room 710

Title: Merleau-Ponty and the disjunctive conception of appearances

There is little doubt that Merleau-Ponty, like John McDowell, is committed to a denial of the claim that the epistemic value of a genuine, veridical experience can never exceed the epistemic value of an indistinguishable non-veridical experience, i.e. to a denial of the so called highest common factor model.? Such a denial however doesn’t yet commit Merleau-Ponty to McDowell’s disjunctive account of perceptual appearances. There are at least two prima facie reasons for not reading Phenomenology of Perception (PP) as coming with such a commitment:? (1) Merleau-Ponty seems to deny the idea that illusions and hallucination can be phenomenally indistinguishable from genuine perception (cf. Berendzen 2013); (2) Merleau-Ponty seems to deny the idea that there are determinate facts about how things subjectively appear to us (cf. Romdenh-Romluc 2011, Chap. 6). In this paper I argue that none of these putative reasons are convincing. First, I argue that Merleau-Ponty’s is committed to the relevant possibility of illusions and hallucinations indistinguishable from genuine perception. Secondly, I present an alternative to Romdenh-Romluc’s interpretation of PP as proposing a deflationary account of “appearance” talk.

Berendzen, J. (2013), Disjunctivism and Perceptual Knowledge in Merleau-Ponty. Res Philosophica 91(3): 1-26
Romdenh-Romluc, K. (2011) Merleau-Ponty and Phenomenology of Perception, London: Routledge.

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