A discussion of Anna Marmodoro's book
Anna Marmodoro (Fellow in Philosophy, Corpus Christi, University of Oxford) discusses her book Aristotle on Perceiving Objects with Ophelia Deroy (Associate Director, Institute of Philosophy, School of Advanced Study and Senior Researcher, Centre for the Study of the Senses), Richard Sorabji (Professor of Philosophy Emeritus, King's College London) and Rowland Stout (Lecturer in Philosophy, University of Oxford and Professor of Philosophy, University College Dublin).
About the book: How can we explain the structure of perceptual experience? What is it that we perceive? How is it that we perceive objects and not disjoint arrays of properties? By which sense or senses do we perceive objects? Are our five senses sufficient for the perception of objects?
Aristotle investigated these questions by means of the metaphysical modeling of the unity of the perceptual faculty and the unity of experiential content. His account remains fruitful-but also challenging-even for contemporary philosophy.
This book offers a reconstruction of the six metaphysical models Aristotle offered to address these and related questions, focusing on their metaphysical underpinning in his theory of causal powers. By doing so, the book brings out what is especially valuable and even surprising about the topic: the core principles of Aristotle's metaphysics of perception are fundamentally different from those of his metaphysics of substance. Yet, for precisely this reason, his models of perceptual content are unexplored territory. This book breaks new ground in offering an understanding of Aristotle's metaphysics of the content of perceptual experience and of the composition of the perceptual faculty.