Davidson's Beliefs, Rationality and Psychophysical Laws ABSTRACT: Davidson argues (1) that the connection between belief and the "constitutive ideal of rationality" (2) precludes the possibility of their being any type-type identities between mental and physical events. However, there are radically different ways to understand both the nature and content of this "constitutive ideal," and the plausibility of Davidson’s argument depends on blurring the distinction between two of these ways. Indeed, it will be argued here that no consistent understanding of the constitutive ideal will allow it to play the dialectical role Davidson intends for it. I. Davidson’s Argument Davidson argues that there can’t be type-type identities between metal and physical events because: (a) if there were such identities, then there would be lawlike statements relating mental and physical events, and (b) there can be no such lawlike statements. According to Davidson, there can be no lawlike connections between the mental and the physical because of the ‘disparate commitments’ (3) of the two realms.
Given that reality can easily be altered by such cases, perception does not seem to represent a direct window onto the world. To overcome this problem, some philosophers like Russell postulated the sense datum theory as an object that stands in relation between the perceiver and an external object. Moreover, this view asserts that the perceiver is never in direct contact with reality but is in a continuous mental state that prevents him to see the world as it is. Hence, the perceiver is not deceived by the illusory cases because there is no objective world to be derived from. Armstrong rejects this theory by appeal to the indeterminacy principle and raises claims to support the reliability of perception as the acquisition of potential belief.
The notion of direct perception that I propose to defend in this paper is this: that one 'directly' perceives an object if one's perception of this object is not mediated by beliefs. Put another way, a 'direct' perceiver does not believe anything about an object in (directly) perceiving it. On this construal of the notion of direct perception, it follows that if one directly perceives an object, one does not describe this object; for any description of an object is expressed as a belief, and direct perceptions do not involve beliefs. The direct perceiver, I claim, does not (and indeed may be completely unable to) give a description of the perceived object, without this lack (or inability) detracting from the fact that the object is directly perceived. In defending this view of direct perception, we need to become clearer on how it is possible for a belief to mediate one's perception of an object.
References Dewey, John, Reconstruction in Philosophy, Boston, 1957. Dubos, Rene, The Torch of Life, New York, 1962. Gurwitsch, Aron, Studies in Phenomenology and Psychology, Evanston, 1966. Gurwitsch, Aron, Phenomenology and the Theory of Science, Evanston, 1974. Husserl, Edmund, Crisis of European Sciences and Transcendental Phenomenology, Evanston, 1970.
But many philosophers have accepted an objection suggesting that this worry is mistaken because in order to have a belief one need not know the metaphysical conditions determining its content, even if they are externalist. And thus, the subject's reflexive judgment about the belief would not need to rest on evidence about those external conditions. But this objection rests on a crucial assumption according to which mental content is reflexively transparent in the sense that a subject could not judge that she or he has an intentional state and be mistaken about the content of her or his state, even if the content is externally determined. My main purpose is not reflexively transparent on the assumption of externalism and, thus, self-knowledge and externalism are incompatible. I. Self-knowledge, Externalism, and an Incompatibility Worry It has been disputed whether an externalist conception of the individuation of intentional states, such as beliefs and des... ... middle of paper ... ...ciation, pp.
 Peter Gay, ed., The Freud Reader (New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1989), 569-570.  ibid, 236-328.  Judy Jones and William Wilson, An Incomplete Education (New York: Ballantine Books, 1995), 438.  Jack Copeland, Artificial Intelligence: A Philosophical Introduction (Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1993), 34.  Lesley Chamberlain, The Secret Artist (New York: Seven Stories Press, 2000), 142.
The Rationality of Probabilities for Actions in Decision Theory ABSTRACT: Spohn's decision model, an advancement of Fishburn's theory, is valuable for making explicit the principle used also by other thinkers that 'any adequate quantitative decision model must not explicitly or implicitly contain any subjective probabilities for acts.' This principle is not used in the decision theories of Jeffrey or of Luce and Krantz. According to Spohn, this principle is important because it has effects on the term of action, on Newcomb's problem, and on the theory of causality and the freedom of the will. On the one hand, I will argue against Spohn with Jeffrey that the principle has to be given up. On the other, I will try to argue against Jeffrey that the decision-maker ascribes subjective probabilities to actions on the condition of the given decision situation.
In conclusion. I think that the subjectivist is too quick in suggesting that colours do not exist in the world: from any amount of negative outcomes, we still cannot claim that there are no colours in the world, the most we can say is that we do not know. The eliminativist theory on the other hand, although it has the advantage that, if it were true, we could certainly conclude that colours do not exist in the world, seems implausible because it does not meet what Logue (2013, p5 and p16 ) calls the ecumenism desidaratum.