Philosophy, Department of


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Published in AMERICAN PHILOSOPHICAL QUARTERLY 19:1 (January 1982), pp. 83-91. Copyright © 1982 North American Philosophical Publications, Inc.


While there is virtually a consensus among contemporary philosophers of perception that some form of direct realism is true, there is less than complete agreement about whether normal, direct perceptions involve mental inferences in any sense. In taking another look at this recurrent question, my aim is twofold: first, to examine some of the arguments and evidences that have been offered in favor of inferences and to see if they can be accommodated within the direct realist framework, and second, to attempt to clarify and defend the insight of direct realism that normal perceptions are noninferential.

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