The standard interpretation of the impression of will takes Hume to advance two substantive claims about the experience of willing an act. The first claim holds that this experience is readily introspectible; the second that this experience is strictly antecedent to the performance of an act. This interpretation has rendered the impression of will vulnerable to two lines of criticism. One problem is introspective. We are not normally aware of a distinct experience of willing an act. Another problem is temporal. It is odd to think that the experience of volition is something that occurs in its entirety prior to the performance of an act. I argue that the standard interpretation, which burdens Hume with an implausible view of the experience of willing an act, imports claims for which there is insuffcient textual evidence and which are not required by his theoretical commitments.


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pp. 91-116
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