more from A.R. Lacey

Single Idea 6455

[catalogued under 12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 4. Sense Data / a. Sense-data theory]

Full Idea

One possibility is that talk of sense-data is a mere linguistic convenience, providing a noun for talking about appearances, as when seeing a red object in sodium light (when it looks grey).

Gist of Idea

Maybe 'sense-data' just help us to talk about unusual perceptual situations


A.R. Lacey (A Dictionary of Philosophy [1976], p.196)

Book Reference

Lacey,A.R.: 'A Dictionary of Philosophy' [RKP 1976], p.196

A Reaction

The term seems to have been coined to deal with situations where there is a gap between appearance and presumed reality, as in illusions. Maybe illusions prove the existence of sense-data, rather than it being a 'convenient' term.