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date: 13 June 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter focuses on the relationship between consciousness and knowledge, and in particular on the role perceptual consciousness might play in justifying beliefs about the external world. A version of phenomenal dogmatism is outlined according to which perceptual experiences immediately, prima facie justify certain select parts of their content, and do so in virtue of their having a distinctive phenomenology with respect to those contents. Along the way various issues are considered in connection with this core theme, including the possibility of immediate justification, the dispute between representational and relational views of perception, the epistemic significance of cognitive penetration, the question of whether perceptual experiences are composed of more basic sensations and seemings, and questions about the existence and epistemic significance of high-level content. A concluding section briefly considers how some of the topics pursued here might generalize beyond perception.

Keywords: evidence-insensitivity, high-level content, immediate justification, perceptual experience, presentational phenomenology, phenomenal conservatism, dogmatism, seemings, sensations, cognitive penetration

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