Epistemology & Philosophy of Science

Volume 44, Issue 2, 2015

Bin Zhao
Pages 218-229

Phenomenal Character, Representational Content, and the Internal Correlation of Experience
Arguments Against Tracking Representationalism

Tracking representationalism is the theory that phenomenal consciousness is a matter of tracking physical properties in an appropriate way. This theory holds that phenomenal character can be explained in terms of representational content, and it also entails that there is unlikely to be a strong correlation between phenomenal character and neural states. However, the empirical evidence shows that both claims cannot be true. So, tracking representationalism is wrong. Its fault is due to ignoring the internal correlation of experience, the existence of which shows that phenomenal character is shaped by neural states to a large extent, so it cannot be wholly explained by representational content.