Abstract

Abstract:

Several authors have recently noted Hume's relative silence on the virtue of strength of mind and how it is developed. In this paper I suggest that Hume had good reasons for this silence, and I argue that Hume's discussion of artificial virtue, especially the virtue of allegiance, reveals a complex view of the limitations on human efforts at self-reform. Further, it reveals the need for government and externally-imposed regulative structures to enable the development of strength of mind. I argue that because of this, strength of mind awkwardly straddles Hume's distinction between natural and artificial virtue. I conclude that, in comparison with traditional models of self-control, Humean strength of mind is indirect, artificial, and social.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1947-9921
Print ISSN
0319-7336
Pages
pp. 201-229
Launched on MUSE
2017-06-07
Open Access
No
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