Phenomenal Concepts

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

44 Scopus citations


This article is about the special, subjective concepts we apply to experience. These are called 'phenomenal concepts' (PCs) and they are of special interest in a number of ways. First, they refer to phenomenal experiences, and the qualitative character of those experiences whose metaphysical status is hotly debated. Conscious experiences strike many philosophers as philosophically problematic and difficult to accommodate within a physicalistic metaphysics. Second, PCs are widely thought to be special and unique among concepts. The sense that there is something special about PCs is very closely tied up with features of the epistemic access they afford to qualia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Mind
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191577154
ISBN (Print)9780199262618
StatePublished - Sep 2 2009
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities(all)


  • Epistemic access
  • Metaphysical status
  • Phenomenal concepts
  • Phenomenal experiences
  • Qualia
  • Qualitative character


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