The University of Sussex

Toward a Phenomenological Pragmatics of Enactive Perception

Tom Froese & Adam Spiers

The enactive approach to perception is generating an extensive amount of interest and debate in the cognitive sciences. One particularly contentious issue has been how best to characterize the perceptual experiences reported by subjects who have mastered the skillful use of a perceptual supplementation (PS)device. This paper argues that this issue cannot be resolved with the use of third-person methodologies alone, but that it requires the development of a phenomenological pragmatics. In particular, it is neccessary that the experimenters become skillful in the use of PS devices themselves. The "Enactive Torch" is proposed as an experimental platform which is cheap, non-intrusive and easy to replicate, so as to enable researchers to corroborate reported experiences with their own phenomenology more easily.

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