The Difference between Language and Perception

Let me briefly outline what might be called the Naive Theory of Temporal Experience (or, perhaps, of Time Perception). This naive theory is simple, as indicated by this definition by Philips :

“[T]he temporal structure of experience matches the apparent temporal structure of the world presented. It is this claim that I call the naïve view of temporal experience, naïveté for short.” (Philips 2014, p.1 of 23)

I assume that what makes this a naive view is that it is the view that how things seem is how things are (and so, in my earlier terminology, that things are not just apparent, but obvious). It is naïve precisely because appearances are taken to be reality.

This raises the question of whether or not we can simply do this — that is, for time, to take appearances to be reality — for apparent time to be actual time. One issue with this comes from perceptual error — just as it is with naive theories of perception more generally; on the illusion side of my work, I have an opinion about the issue in general — briefly, that there can be different kinds of perceptual error, and only some are problematic as for perception (I will expand on this in a later post).

This post focuses on temporal experience.

Naive theories of temporal experience have their advocates (Lee is not one; Philips seems to be one). I guess I am sympathetic to the view for time (and to naive realism generally). What I want to talk about, however, is something else: a point about a common objection to this view: what I will call the Vehicle/Content Confusion Objection.

Please note: There are nine pages in this post; this is page 1. To go to the other pages, click on the linked numbers below. They are just below ‘the ‘Related’ links (WordPress is very annoying about this).

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