Category Archives: Kant and/or Hume

On appreciating systems

How wonderful it would be to be a systematic thinker! One marvels at the Aristotles, the Aquinases, the Descarteses, the Kants, and the Hegels and the Marxes (well, the Karl Marxes anyway), the Freuds – those who know how to … Continue reading

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David Hume – the “Assassin’s Assessor”

Edinburgh’s “Poker Club” began meeting in 1762. Each week, fifty or so gentlemen would congregate in a tavern for a long afternoon followed by dinner and argue events of the day ranging from politics to morals and culture – matters … Continue reading

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Sloterdijk, Hume, and a healthy skepticism

As I work through the recent works of Peter Sloterdijk (Spheres I: Bubbles, Spheres II: Globes), I am chiefly amazed and enthused by his ability to find deep symbolic and mythic connections throughout the history of philosophical thought, and to … Continue reading

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More musings on Humean causality

We expect that causal laws will be the same across all experience. Hume famously claims that this expectation is grounded neither in pure reason nor in experience. Not pure reason: for one can posit a cause and deny the effect … Continue reading

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Hume and the expedition to Canada

In 1746, Hume returned to London after touring Europe as tutor and caretaker of the mad Marquess of Annendale. He was not sure what was next in his life. He was already 35 and somewhat ashamed of not having yet … Continue reading

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Hume falls into a bog, promises his way out

At the beginning of book three of his Treatise on Human Nature, David Hume argues that justice is something we invent. In a word, justice is unnatural. It isn’t something we just see in the world, since we only ever … Continue reading

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Review of Phillipson’s Hume

Review of Nicholas Phillipson, Hume (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1989). Many people know of David Hume the great empiricist, the skeptic of causality, and the architect of a moral system based on natural sentiments. But in his own day, … Continue reading

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