Blue Sky Thoughts
Jamie Carnie

'All credit to him for building the case for an unfashionable theory, and making the reader think - which is what philosophy is supposed to do.' Independent on Sunday 17 June 2007

Does the world stay ‘lit up’ with colours when we look away from it? Does a tree falling in a remote forest make a noise? Does a sweet left in its wrapper have a taste?

In this challenging and controversial book, Jamie Carnie argues for a new way of thinking about sensory qualities as relations. Claiming that colour is determined by the way an object ‘projects’ itself towards us, Carnie challenges both the long-standing Newtonian position, that the senses are in the ‘eye’ of the beholder, and also the realists’ belief that sensory qualities are simply properties of the objects to which we ascribe them.

The resulting perspective on the world is at once familiar and yet holds many deep surprises. Referencing LSD trips and the perceptual capabilities of bees alongside Zen-like realizations on ‘having no head’, Carnie ultimately proposes a radically pared down conception of man’s mental faculties. But what of the consequences? Can the relational theory really solve infamous problems such as how the mind is related to the physical matter of man’s brain?

Jamie Carnie is a freelance philosopher and software engineer. He has been working in the field of colour, consciousness and reality for the last twenty-five years.

'I like a writer with a big idea. This lucidly eccentric book offers pregnant evocations of dozing on the beach, or walking through a forest, arguments with Newtons or Descartes, and musings on LSD trips...Interesting if true' Steven Poole, The Guardian

To read an extract of this title click here

To read Jamie Carnie's blog click here

Original paperback 272pp
ISBN: 978-0-7145-3124-3
April 2007
World Rights

COVER DESIGN: Holly Macdonald