What is the nature and function of Spatio-Temporal Imagination?: can it plausibly be explained as an offline simulation of the visual process?

King, Peter R. (2010) What is the nature and function of Spatio-Temporal Imagination?: can it plausibly be explained as an offline simulation of the visual process? PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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The main aim of this thesis is to analyse the nature and function of Spatio-Temporal Imagination (STIm) under an imagination-as-simulation framework. STIm is defined as any imaginative act that allows you to consider a location and/or a time other than the one you are currently experiencing. I will focus on the phenomenal visual imagery aspect of this mental phenomenon and hence will not discuss other potential versions of STIm in any detail.

Part I will explore the current simulation literature to get an idea of what imagination-as-simulation may mean and to see how it dovetails with other researchers who have a similar style of approach (Chapter 2). I will then defend the Kosslyn Model of visual imagery, which I will argue is ameneable to being interpreted as an imagination-as-simulation process (Chapters 3&4).

Part II will look at what different perceptual theories may say about the imagination-as-simulation debate. Using the Selective vs. Generative Approach distinction as a guide, we will look at two theories that are obviously examples of each respectively: Naïve Realism (Chapter 5) and my own theory of STIm (Chapter 7). We will also look at Tye’s (1995) PANIC theory, as a related approach that will also be used to illustrate other points relevant to the debate about the relation between perception and imagery (Chapter 6).

I will argue that visual STIm has much in common with visual perception in that they are both: locally generated visual style phenomenal representational mental states. This is even though there are some other crucial differences in how they are caused and experienced. The thesis will also describe a way that these images can be labeled with different spatial and temporal contexts. This is what allows STIm to be used to consider alternative possibilities both temporally and spatially and to function as a way to plan our actions in the present and to have an extended spatial and temporal awareness of our environment.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Currie, G.P.
Kennedy, M.
Keywords: Spatio-Temporal Imagination, STIm, visual perception, Kosslyn model, imagination
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Arts > School of Humanities
Item ID: 11346
Depositing User: EP, Services
Date Deposited: 05 Oct 2010 11:07
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2017 11:21
URI: https://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/11346

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