Jan 29, 2023
Our sensory experiences make up the fabric of our worlds. It’s a fabric that keeps us warm; a fabric that makes the world worth living in. If you couldn’t hear the cry of your new-born child, if you couldn’t taste your grandfather’s famous brussels sprouts at Christmas, or feel the embrace of your lifelong partner, then your life wouldn’t just include less experiences, but less meaning. Given the value we place on our sensory experiences, it seems important that we understand the nature of them. What is happening, exactly, when we hear, taste, and feel? What are sensory experiences made of?
In this episode, we’ll be exploring the nature of sensory phenomenology with Dr Laura Gow, Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Liverpool. Formerly of Warwick University, Cambridge University, and the University of Antwerp, Dr Gow – whose work focuses on the philosophy of perception and the metaphysics of consciousness – is one of the UK’s leading phenomenologists. From hallucinations and colour to empty space and silence, Laura’s research covers a broad range of topics, but in this episode we’ll be focusing on transparency.
According to the transparency view, when we undergo a perceptual experience, the only properties we’re aware of are located externally. There are no perceptual properties, says Gow, inside of us – despite what it may seem.
Part I. Everything is Clear
Part II. Further Analysis and Discussion