The Key Premise – A congenitally blind neuroscientist could never, through reading neuroscience in braille, come to know what it’s like to see colours.
While this avoids some of the technical issues in the Mary version of the Knowledge Argument (e.g. the exact conditions of her life in the black-and-white room), it highlights for me that such arguments do not seem sufficient to refute physicalism. Let me give an example from my own life that is similar to Goff’s.
For my entire life, I have been unable to hear in my left ear. This means that I cannot hear in stereo, and never have been able to. I also cannot tell where sounds are coming from, e.g. when someone calls my name. However, I think I have a very good sense of how stereo hearing works. Indeed, I think the facts surrounding stereo hearing are a lot simpler than all the facts that Mary would need to know about colour perception. I understand how it works, but I do not know what it is like to hear in stereo. When I try to imagine it, all I imagine is either a vague “that would be amazing” sort of notion, or I just imagine facts that I already know (“I could listen to songs in stereo,” “I could hear where sound are coming from,” etc.). No matter how much I learn about stereo hearing, I cannot know what it’s like to hear in stereo. And if something happened where my hearing in my left ear was fixed, and I could hear in stereo for the first time, it would be an absolutely new experience and probably an amazing one.
All this tells me is that subjective experiences — qualia — are real, and that there is a type of subjective experience that I am unable to have. What I don’t see is how to get from that recognition to refuting physicalism. Unless we define physicalism in such a way that it entails the nonexistence of qualia (i.e. unless physicalism entails illusionism), then I don’t see how this refutes physicalism.
(Of course, the Knowledge Argument is not the only argument against physicalism.)