Ethics Paper on Direct Realism vs Indirect Realism

Ethics Paper on Direct Realism vs Indirect Realism

Direct Realism

Direct realism, also referred to as naïve realism or simply common sense realism is a mind philosophy that originated from perception theory and states that senses enable humans to recognize all objects as they actually appear. With the help of senses, it is possible to understand that objects are made up of matter, can occupy space and they have properties such as smell, color, texture, size, taste, and size which are normally perceived correctly (Pierce, 5). Realists assert that existence of physical objects does not depend on human beings minds as well as how they perceive them. In other words, direct realism tries to explain the existence of a physical world outside the mind that does not depend on the activities that occur in the human mind. Direct realism suggests that the instantaneous object perceived by humans is the physical object itself and it is not perceived in virtue of perceiving another thing that acts as a mediator between the physical object and mind itself.

Indirect Realism

Just like direct realism, indirect realism states that existence of physical objects is independent of the mind. However, indirect realism adds that there is the existence of something that acts as a mediator between the human mind and the physical world. It states that humans perceive physical objects in a virtue of perceiving sense-data a process that is mind-dependent (Power, 96). According to this theory, sense-data originate from and represent the physical world. Hence, humans perceive sense-data instantly and physical world indirectly. Thus, indirect realism creates a sense-data field between the mind of perceiver and the physical object.


Works Cited

Pierce, Bryony. “The Role of External Objects in Perceptual Experience.” (2016).

Power, Sean Enda. “Perceiving External Things and the Time‐Lag Argument.” European Journal of Philosophy 21.1 (2013): 94-117.