Art and Belief presents twelve new essays at the intersection of philosophy of mind and philosophy of art, particularly to do with the relation between belief and truth in our experience of art. Several contributors discuss the cognitive contributions artworks can make and the questions surrounding these. Can authors of fiction testify to their readers? If they can, are they culpable for the false beliefs of their readers formed in response to their work? If they cannot, that is, if the testimonial powers of authors of fiction are limited, is there some non-testimonial epistemic role that fiction can play? And in any case, is such a role relevant when determining the value of the work? Also explored are issues concerned with the phenomenon of fictional persuasion, specifically, what is the nature of the attitude involved in such cases (those in which we form beliefs about the real world in response to reading fiction)? If these attitudes are typically unstable, unjustified, and unreliable, does this put pressure on the view that they are beliefs? If these attitudes are beliefs, does this put pressure on the view that all beliefs are aimed at truth? The final pair of papers in the volume take different stances on the nature of aesthetic testimony, and whether testimony of this kind is a legitimate source of beliefs about aesthetic properties and value.
About the Author
Ema Sullivan-Bissett is a Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Birmingham. Her research concerns the nature of belief and its connection to truth, as well as delusional beliefs and how they are formed. Her publications include 'A Defence of Owens' Exclusivity Objection to Beliefs Having Aims'(2013), Philosophical Studies, vol. 163, no. 2, pp. 452-7 (with Paul Noordhof), 'Implicit Bias, Confabulation, and Epistemic Innocence' (2015), Consciousness and Cognition, vol. 33, pp. 548-60, 'Biological Function and Epistemic Normativity' (forthcoming), Philosophical Explorations, and 'Aims andExclusivity' (forthcoming), European Journal of Philosophy. Helen Bradley received her PhD in Philosophy at the University of York in 2016 under the supervision of Peter Lamarque. Her research concerns the philosophy of depiction and the relation, and significance, of artistic style to our experience of pictures. Her publications include 'Reducing the Spaceof Seeing-In' (2014), British Journal of Aesthetics, vol. 54, no. 4, pp. 409-24, and 'The Pursuit of Fiction: An interview with Peter Lamarque' (2013), Postgraduate Journal of Aesthetics, vol. 10, no. 2, pp. 2-16. Paul Noordhof is Anniversary Professor of Philosophy at the University of York. His main research interests are in the philosophy of mind, action theory, and metaphysics. His work in the philosophy of mind mainly focuses upon the nature and explanatory character of consciousness. His publicationsinclude 'A Defence of Owens' Exclusivity Objection to Beliefs Having Aims' (2013), Philosophical Studies, vol. 163, no. 2, pp. 452-7 (with Ema Sullivan-Bissett), 'The Essential Instability of Self-Deception' (2009), Social Theory and Practice, vol. 35, no. 1, pp. 45-71, 'Self-Deception, Interpretation and Consciousness' (2003), Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, vol. 77, no. 1, pp. 75-100, and 'Believe What You Want' (2001), Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society, vol 101, no. 3, pp. 247-65.