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psyb51- Perception and Cognition

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Matthias Niemeier

SENSATION AND PERCEPTIONCHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTIONEarly Philosophy of PerceptionPlato compares ordinary senses of reality to prisoners in cave can only ever see the shadows on the wall in front of them this is their complete realityoEmphasizes how critically our conception of reality depends on what we learn about the world through our sensesPercepNsense of reality are products o evolution oSenses evolved to help us act to encourage survivalto match the sort of energy in the envt that are most imp For survival oEX human vision restricted to light in narrow band of electromag Energy closely related to the energy that reaches surface of earth from the sunHeraclitus known for you can never step into the same river twiceoStressed that everything is always changing no two experiences can stever be identical bc experiencing the 1 event changes the way we ndexperience the same event the 2 timeoPerception does not depend only on energy events that changedepend on the qualities of the perceiver oExperience w world plays huge role in the way perception worksBegins early in life sounds that fetus hears shape later listening Structure of envt cultural diff speechmusic molds the way perception worksPerceptual systems are acutely sensitive to changeoTend to be unaware of things in envt that dont change but rather focus on things that draw out attention ambulance sirens oPercepN also ignores anything that stays same for a long timeAdaptation reduction in response caused by continuing stimulantAdaptNperceptual processes render things that are steadypredictable in envt much less salient than things changing Democritus almost complete trust in sensesoTrust arose from radical idea that world is made up of atoms that collide w one another oBlvd that sensation caused by atoms leaving objects and making contact w sense organsSenses should be trusted bc perceptionphysical interacN bw worldour bodiesmost reliable senses detect the weighttexture of objects bc in direct contact w things when we make judgments of weight textureall other qualitiessecondary
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