• Introspective disputes deflated: the case for phenomenal variation Fink, Sascha Benjamin 2018 Philosophical Studies: An International Journal for Philosophy in the Analytic Tradition , Vol. 175 , Issue 12 , S. 3165 ff. ( Zeitschrift ) Englisch 0031-8116 | 1573-0883 Abstract

    Sceptics vis-à-vis introspection often base their scepticism on 'phenomenological disputes', 'introspective disagreement', or 'introspective disputes' (ID) (see Kriegel in Phenomenol CognSci 6(1): 115-136, 2007; Bayne and Spener in Philos Issues 20(1): 1-22, 2010; Schwitzgebel in Perplexities of consciousness, MIT Press, Cambridge, 2011): introspectors massively diverge in their opinions about experiences, and there seems to be no method to resolve these issues. Sceptics take this to show that introspection lacks any epistemic merit. Here, I provide a list of paradigmatic examples, distill necessary and sufficient conditions for IDs, present the sceptical argument encouraged by IDs, and review the two main strategies (resolution and containment) to reject such a scepticism. However, both types of strategies are unsatisfactory. In order to save introspection from the looming sceptical threat, I advocate a deflationary strategy, based on either an 'Argument from Perceptual Kinship' or an 'Argument from Ownership'. In the end, there cannot be any genuine ros, for nothing can fulfil the reasonable conditions for ros. What looks like IDs may instead be indicators of phenomenal variation. Debates that look like IDs may then arise even if introspection were a perfect method to know one's mind. Thus, scepticism vis-à-vis introspection based on ros rests on shaky grounds.

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Fink, Sascha Benjamin

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