Dennett, D. C. (2016). Illusionism as the obvious default theory of consciousness. Journal of Consciousness Studies, 23(11-12), 65-72.
Abstract:
Using a parallel with stage magic, it is argued that far from being seen as an extreme alternative, illusionism as articulated by Frankish should be considered the front runner, a conservative theory to be developed in detail, and abandoned only if it demonstrably fails to account for phenomena, not prematurely dismissed as 'counter-intuitive'. We should explore the mundane possibilities thoroughly before investing in any magical hypotheses.
Citing Place (1956) in context (citations start with an asterisk *):
* The seeds of illusionism can already be discerned in U.T. Place's pioneering article, ‘Is Consciousness a Brain Process?' (1956). Place was so bold as to identify the denial of illusionism as a fallacy, the phenomenological fallacy:
[T]he mistake of supposing that when the subject describes his experience, when he describes how things look, sound, smell, taste, or feel to him, he is describing the literal properties of objects and events on a peculiar sort of internal cinema or television screen, usually referred to in the modern psychological literature as the 'phenomenal field'. (ibid.)
How then does one avoid the phenomenological fallacy? J.J.C. Smart offered an answer in 1959 and elaborated on his answer in 1963:
The man who reports a yellowish-orange after-image does so in effect as follows: ‘What is going on in me is like what is going on in me when my eyes are open, the lighting is normal, etc., etc., and there really is a yellowish-orange patch on the wall.' (Smart, 1963, p. 94)
As Smart pointed out way back then, it is quite possible for a mechanism to be able to discern or discriminate when something going on in it is like something else without having any idea just wherein that similarity resides. If we fill the heads of people with such mechanisms, suitably organized and orchestrated, they can provide a large part of the answer to ‘And then what happens?' without ever postulating anything like phenomenality.