Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 27 October 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the status of the virtual in perception. As understood philosophically, the virtual (or “pure potentiality”) is strictly complementary to the actual, not in opposition or contradiction to it. The virtual is abstract by definition, which means that it cannot be reduced to the empirically present. But neither can it be separated from it. There is a reciprocity between the actual and the virtual that enters actively into the constitution of every act of experience. Although the virtual as such cannot appear in perception, as a factor in constitution of experience it cannot but make itself felt with each perception’s arising. The question then becomes, in what way does the abstractness of the virtual come with coming perception? How does it make its active implication in experience felt? What is a virtual image? Is there such a thing as virtual event? If so, in what sense can virtual events be said to have value? The chapter develops throughout a realist account of the virtual as “lived abstraction.”

Keywords: virtual image, virtual event, optical illusion, stereoscopic vision, perceptual judgment, lived abstraction, philosophy of value, A. N. Whitehead, Henri Bergson, Gilles Deleuze, Félix Guattari, Raymond Ruyer

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.