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Perception Reconsidered – The Process Point of View

Franz Riffert

The collection of papers of this book discuss Whitehead’s bold theory of perception from different angles. According to the major perspectives the book is divided into two major parts: the philosophical and the psychological perspective. The four philosophical papers focus on: the relation between Whitehead’s theory of perception and his account of the phases of concrescence, the nature of causal explanations in Whitehead’s theory of perception, a comparative study on Kitaro Nishida’s philosophy of pure experience and Whitehead’s philosophy of perception, and a contrasting account of Whitehead’s theory of perception with that of Deleuze. In the five papers of part II of the book («the psychological perspective»), some basic guidelines for conducting process-oriented psychological experiments on perceptgenesis are given. Then Whitehead’s tri-modal theory of perception in the light of microgenetic research results is discussed. A comparison of Whitehead’s position of the construction of solid objects with Piaget’s account of the constructive development of the ’object permanent’ in the young child follows. In the fourth paper James Gibson’s early position on perception is compared with Whitehead’s account. Finally it is shown that Whitehead’s theory of perception may provide a mode of access to nonordinary experiences and an explanation for the emergence of nonordinary states of consciousness.
Contents: David Roy: The Correlation of the Modes of Perception and the Phases of Concrescence in Whitehead’s Cosmology – Randy Ramal: Creating Meaning: Whitehead on Perception, Language, and Causal Explanation – Tokiyuki Nobuhara: A Whiteheadian Reinterpretation of Nishida’s Philosophy of Pure Experience: With the Concept of Symbolic Reference as Guide – Keith Robinson: The ‘View from Nowhere’: Deleuze, Whitehead and the Process Point of View of Perception – Gudmund Smith: A Vademecum for Experimental Process Research – Franz Riffert: Whitehead’s Theory of Perception in the Light of Microgenetic Research – Franz Riffert: Whitehead and Piaget on the Construction of Permanent Objects – Michael Katzko: A Process Interpretation of Gibson’s Theories of Perception – John Buchanan: The Depths of Perception.