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David Hume

An Introduction to His Philosophical System

by Terence Penelhum

Publication Year: 1992

This volume provides a general account of the philosophy of David Hume in a way that shows that he is, contrary to common belief, a highly systematic thinker whose thought and personality are closely related.

Published by: Purdue University Press

Series: History of Philosophy

Cover, Title Page, Copyright

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pp. vii

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pp. ix-xi

Hume is generally agreed to be the greatest philosopher to have written in English, and he is read very widely indeed by students of philosophy, often early in their studies. This presents problems for anyone contemplating producing a book about him...

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Note on Texts and Abbreviations

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pp. xiii-xv

The selections in this book from the Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding and the Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals are taken from the 1772 edition. This was the last edition seen right through the press by Hume himself...

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1. Hume's Life

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pp. 1-7

David Hume was born on 26 April 1711 in Edinburgh.1 His father was Joseph Hume, of Ninewells, near Berwick, and the family were moderately prosperous Border gentry, quite prominent in local affairs, and strict Presbyterians...

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2. Hume and His Philosophical System

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pp. 8-38

Hume's philosophy is at present the subject of very wide scholarly interest, and his reputation is higher than it has ever been. In spite of this, there is a lingering reluctance among philosophers, including many who admit major debts to him...

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3. The Science of Mind

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pp. 39-63

Every one will readily allow, that there is a considerable difference between the perceptions of the mind, when a man feels the pain of excessive heat, or the pleasure of moderate warmth, and when he afterwards recalls to his memory this sensation...

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4. Cause and Effect

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pp. 64-123

All the objects of human reason or enquiry may naturally be divided into two kinds, to wit, relations of ideas, and matters of fact. Of the first kind are the sciences of geometry, algebra, and arithmetic, and in short, every affirmation...

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5. Morality and Justice

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pp. 124-159

If the foregoing hypothesis be received, it will now be easy for us to determine the question first started,1 concerning the general principles of morals; and though we postponed the decision of that question, lest it should then...

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6. Religion

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pp. 160-192

I was lately engaged in conversation with a friend who loves sceptical paradoxes; where, though he advanced many principles, of which I can by no means approve, yet as they seem to be curious, and to bear some relation...

Appendix: Some Notes on the Hume Literature

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pp. 193-201


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pp. 203-214


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pp. 215-218

E-ISBN-13: 9781612490458
E-ISBN-10: 161249045X
Print-ISBN-13: 9781557530134
Print-ISBN-10: 1557530130

Page Count: 240
Publication Year: 1992

Series Title: History of Philosophy