Keith A. Wilson
Room 4.04c, Dugald Stewart Building
- 3 Charles Street, Edinburgh
- Post code
- EH8 9AD
Office hour: Tuesdays 12–1pm during semester 1, other times by prior arrangement
I’m a Philosopher of Mind and Perception whose research interests include the metaphysics of experience, the individuation of the senses, perceptual appearances and representational content, and the temporal structure of experience.
Prior to become a Teaching Fellow at the University of Edinburgh, I was a postdoctoral researcher on the AHRC-funded Rethinking the Senses project and a postdoctoral investigator on the John Templeton Foundation-funded Synchronising the Senses project at the University of Glasgow (2014–17), and a Lecturer at the University of Sussex (2013–14).
- Ph.D. in Philosophy (No Corrections), University of Warwick, 2013
- M.Litt. in Philosophy (Distinction), University of St Andrews, 2008
- B.A. (Hons.) in Philosophy (First Class with Distinction), University of York, 2004
Responsibilities & affiliations
- Teaching Fellow in Philosophy, University of Edinburgh
- Honorary Research Affiliate, Centre for the Study of Perceptual Experience, University of Glasgow
This year, I am teaching:
- Mind, Matter, and Language, PHIL08014 (Lecturer, 2nd year course, weeks 1–5)
- Perception and Action: From Inner Zombies to the Predictive Brain, PHIL10148 (Lecturer and Course Organiser, combined 3rd year honours and MSc)
Student consultation hours:
- Semester 1: Tuesdays 12–1pm during term time
- Semester 2: TBC
Please note that as I work part-time, I am not normally in the office on Mondays or Fridays. To arrange a meeting outside of my regular office hour above, please email beforehand to check availability.
This year, I am teaching:
- Metaphysics of Mind MSc, PHIL11066 (Course Organiser)
- Perception and Action: From Inner Zombies to the Predictive Brain MSc, PHIL11126 (Lecturer and Course Organiser)
- Philosophical Methods I (Online) MSc, PHIL11008 (Tutor, weeks 8 & 9)
My research concerns the nature of perceptual experience and the senses, in particular focusing on: (i) perceptual appearances and representational content; (ii) multisensory perception and the senses; (iii) time-consciousness and the temporal structure of experience. All three themes are combined in my current Synchronising the Senses project, funded by the John Templeton Foundation via the University of Cambridge’s New Directions in the Study of the Mind initiative.
For further information, please see my personal website.
Current research interestsIn addition to the Synchronising the Senses project, I am currently writing papers on: (i) ‘Is There an Auditory Field?’, (ii) ‘The Two Senses of Smell’, and (iii) ‘Does Property-Perception Entail Representational Content?’, as well as an annotated bibliography on ‘The Senses’ for Oxford Bibliographies Online. Other research interests include the philosophy of psychology and cognitive science, epistemology of perception, the metaphysics and consciousness of time and temporal passage (on which I wrote my M.Litt. dissertation), and the Scottish Enlightenment philosopher Thomas Reid, on whose account of visual perception I have published in The Philosophical Quarterly.
Past research interestsIn my Ph.D. thesis, I argued that constraints upon our ability to recognise the contents of our experience rule out many apparently plausible accounts of experiential content and phenomenal character, i.e. what perceptual experience is subjectively like, and I recently co-edited a special issue of the journal Topoi on the subject of Perception Without Representation.
I strongly believe in the importance of increasing public awareness and understanding of philosophy, and am available to comment on a wide range of issues including:
- Perception and the senses
- Philosophy of science and the mind (esp. psychology, neuroscience, cognitive science, and the nature and experience of time), and
- The relevance of philosophy and philosophical debate to wider society.
I am co-designer of The Illusions Index, a searchable database of perceptual illusions with philosophical and scientific commentary from the University of Glasgow’s Centre for the Study of Perceptual Experience. I am also active on Twitter, where I my account is ranked among the top 25 for philosophy.
Further details of my public engagement and outreach activities may be found on my website.
I am the lead applicant and postdoctoral investigator on the Synchronising the Senses project, a pilot study examining the temporal structure of multisensory experience, and am currently writing a paper on this topic and applying for further major grant funding.
Current project grants
John Templeton Foundation grant, awarded in October 2016 for ‘Synchronising the Senses’ (June–September 2017) via the University of Cambridge’s New Directions in the Study of the Mind initiative
Past project grants
Wellcome Trust ISSF Public Engagement Bursary for outreach activities at Glasgow Science Festival, University of Glasgow, 2016 (see below)
Scots Philosophical Association Conference Support Grant for a workshop on Perception and Cognition: Top-Down Influences in Perceptual Experience, University of Glasgow, 2015
Analysis Trust, Aristotelian Society, and Mind Association Conference Grants for MindGrad Conference, University of Warwick, 2009
British Library Research Information Network funding to design and develop a wiki-based philosophy website in conjunction with Dr Tom Stoneham, University of York, 2006
I have organised many research and outreach events, including international workshops on Top-Down Influences in Perceptual Experience and the Temporal Structure of Multisensory Experience, a research forum for early career philosophers of mind, the Warwick Graduate Conference in the Philosophy of Mind (MindGrad), and public engagement events at the Glasgow Science Festival and elsewhere.
For a full list of conferences and workshops attended, please see my personal website.
Details of invited talks and papers may be found on my website.
Articles and book chapters
- ‘The Senses’, with F. Macpherson. Forthcoming in Oxford Bibliographies, Oxford University Press.
- ‘Are the Senses Silent? Travis’s Argument from Looks’. Forthcoming in Charles Travis on Language, Thought, and Perception, T. Dobler & J. Collins (eds.), Oxford University Press.
- ‘Perception Without Representation’, with R. Locatelli. Topoi: An International Review of Philosophy 36 (2): 197–212, March 2017.
- ‘Reid’s Direct Realism and Visible Figure’. The Philosophy Quarterly 63 (253): 783–803, September 2013.
- ‘Does Attention Exist?. British Journal of Undergraduate Philosophy 2 (2): 153–68, July 2007.
Guest-Edited Special Issue on ‘Perception Without Representation’, with R. Locatelli. Topoi: An International Review of Philosophy 36 (2), June 2017. Includes papers by Bill Brewer, Berit Brogaard, Jérôme Dokic & Jean-Rémy Martin, Naomi Eilan, Ivan Ivanov, J. A. Judge, M. G. F. Martin, Michael O’Sullivan and Charles Travis.
- Review of Charles Travis, Perception: Essays after Frege. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, April 2014.