Nicholas Wiltsher, UU, and Mikael Janvid, SU
- Date: –13:00
- Location: Engelska parken - Eng2-1022
- Organiser: Department of Philosophy, UU, and Department of Philosophy, SU
- Contact person: Folke Tersman, Matti Eklund
Joint Seminar – Practical and Theoretical Philosophy, Uppsala and Stockholm University
(NB, day and time)
10:15-11:30 Nicholas Wiltsher, UU: "Is Imagining a Process, or a Way of Representing?”
Commentator: Madeleine Hyde, SU
11:45-13:00 Mikael Janvid, SU: “Testimony in African Epistemology Revisited”
Commentator: Maarten Steenhagen, UU
The prevalent view of imagination is that it is a capacity to produce representational mental states of a distinctive imaginative kind. These states can then be used in a range of imaginative activities, such as pretence or fantasy. My first contention is that this view mischaracterises imagination, imagining, and their relation to imaginative activities. My second contention is that it's better to characterise imagination as a distinctive determinable process employing ordinary mental representations, and imaginative activities as its determinates.
This paper addresses important epistemological issues raised by Barry Hallen and J. Olubi Sodipo’s pioneering philosophical fieldwork among Yoruba herbalists or masters of medicine (onisegun). More precisely, I shall primarily investigate, as well as object to, the unduly restrictive view they take on testimony in Yoruba epistemic practice. With this criticism as the starting point, I explore different ways in which an “oral culture” like Yoruba can rely on testimony as a source of justification without succumbing to the gullible and uncritical attitude towards tradition such societies have been charged with. To this purpose I put to use relevant developments in analytic epistemology taking place after Hallen and Sodipo published their work.