Lexicon of Arguments

Philosophical and Scientific Issues in Dispute

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Sc. Camps
Theses I
Theses II


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I 270
Standard Conditions/Contents/Millikan: 1. To give them a content, "standard observers" must mean more than "observers for whom red things look red, under standard conditions."
And according to "standard conditions".
Solution: Standard conditions for red must be spelled out.
Problem: no human being has any idea how this should work.
Problem: if you had every reason to believe that you are a standard observer, there are circumstances where an object appears to have a different color than it has. But then you would not conclude that the thing was not red.
Problem: if a thing is defined by its opposite properties, an observer must also be able to identify these opposing properties. And it can be the case that these never come to light!
Problem: how can my experience testify the opposite of red and green?
Many authors: think that you can never assert at all that red and green could be in the same place at the same time.
I 271
MillikanVsTradition: this is not true, in reality, there are many possibilities, e.g. squinting.
Complementary colors/perception/seeing/certainty/Millikan: our confidence in the fact that red and green are opposites, (perhaps built into nature) is an empirical certainty. And this is certainty for the objective validity of these concepts, for the fact that red and green are properties - and not just hallucinations.

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