Descartes and the Puzzle of Sensory Representation by Raffaella De Rosa

Descartes and the Puzzle of Sensory Representation

byRaffaella De Rosa

Paperback | November 24, 2013

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While much has been written on Descartes' theory of mind and ideas, no systematic study of his theory of sensory representation and misrepresentation is currently available in the literature. Descartes and the Puzzle of Sensory Misrepresentation is an ambitious attempt to fill this gap. Itargues against the established view that Cartesian sensations are mere qualia by defending the view that they are representational; it offers a descriptivist-causal account of their representationality that is critical of, and differs from, all other extant accounts (such as, for example, causal,teleofunctional and purely internalist accounts); and it has the advantage of providing an adequate solution to the problem of sensory misrepresentation within Descartes' internalist theory of ideas. In sum, the book offers a novel account of the representationality of Cartesian sensations; provides a panoramic overview, and critical assessment, of the scholarly literature on this issue; and places Descartes' theory of sensation in the central position it deserves among the philosophical andscientific investigations of the workings of the human mind.

About The Author

Raffaella De Rosa is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers University.
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Details & Specs

Title:Descartes and the Puzzle of Sensory RepresentationFormat:PaperbackDimensions:206 pages, 8.5 × 5.51 × 0.01 inPublished:November 24, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199686793

ISBN - 13:9780199686797

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Table of Contents

PrefaceAcknowledgementsAbbreviations1. Overview2. Descartes' Account of Ideas and the Puzzle of Sensory Misrepresentation3. Non-Representationalist Solutions: Cartesian Sensations as Qualia4. Externalist Solutions: Causal Accounts5. Externalist Solutions: Teleofunctional Accounts6. A Descriptivist-Causal Account and the Solution of the Puzzle of Sensory Misrepresentation7. Objections and Replies8. ConclusionReferences

Editorial Reviews

"an intensive study and a masterful polemic on a subject of major concern to all Descartes scholars ... an excellent contribution to a recent renaissance of erudite and deep studies of Descartes' epistemology." --Richard A. Watson, Journal of the History of Philosophy