Dr. David Lund to present Feb. 11 Honors Council lecture

BEMIDJI, Minn.Dr. David Lund, professor of philosophy at Bemidji State University, will present an Honors Council Lecture entitled “Perceptual Experience and Physical Theory” on Wednesday, Feb. 11. The lecture, which is free to the public, will be held at 7 p.m. in Hagg-Sauer 112 on the Bemidji State campus.

Human beings rely on sense perception for our knowledge of our own bodies and of the world surrounding our bodies. Many have held to the position that all knowledge is, in fact, derived from sense perception. But profound problems come into view and we try to understand the character of sense perception and its relation to the material world.

Unreflective common sense seems to assume uncritically that sense perception simply brings people into immediate contact with their material environment. We perceive that environment to actually have the sensory qualities – the color, hardness, smell, shape, etc. – that it appears to us to have.

In the case of vision, for example, common sense assumptions would seem to be that looking at the world through our eyes is like looking through a window at objects outside. If the glass is transparent, those objects appear to us just as they would if we were to go outside and view them directly.

However, Lund will argue this assumption to be completely false, and that it be rejected.

“Contrary to the common sense assumption, the immediate object of sense perception is internal and mind-dependent,” Lund says. “The external, public world is not at all as it appears to be.”

Lund, a native of Roseau, Minn., spent his undergraduate years studying the natural sciences and earned a master’s degree in psychology before he discovered philosophy as an academic discipline and pursued his doctorate from the University of Minnesota. He returned to his native northern Minnesota in 1972 when he joined the philosophy department at Bemidji State. Lund has published three books, “Death and Conciousness,” “Perception, Mind and Personal Identity,” and “Making Sense of It All.”

Bemidji State will host five Honors Council Lectures in the fall, running through April 29.

2009 Spring Honors Lecture Series
* Feb. 11: “Perceptual Experience and Physical Theory,” David Lund
* Feb. 24: “The Road Less Traveled,” Donald Day
* March 24: “Walking Machines: A Short History of Legged, Mechanized Locomotion,” Vincent Vohnout
* April 15: “Don’t Stop Talkin’ ‘Bout  Freedom: The Censorship of Rock Music in the 1960s and 1970s,” Michael Taylor
* Apri 29: “From the Tomb to the Cathedral: The Roots and Traditions of Orthodox Icon Painting,” Natalia Himmirska

For more information about the Honors Council Lecture Series, please contact the honors program at (218) 755-3984.

Feb. 11
– 7:00 p.m. – Bemidji State University Honors Lecture: “Perceptual Experience and Physical Theory” presented by Dr. David Lund, professor of philosophy, Bemidji State. Location: Hagg-Sauer 112, Bemidji State campus. Admission: free.