Hume's Scepticism

Barry Stroud

in Philosophers Past and Present

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780199608591
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191729621 | DOI:
Hume's Scepticism

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This chapter attempts to bring out the full richness and the significance, both for philosophy and for human life, of what Hume means by the ‘scepticism’ he endorses and recommends. It is not simply a philosophical doctrine or theoretical intellectual position, but more a set of attitudes and inclinations, and so potentially a way of life, perhaps arrived at in part by philosophical reflection. It explains why Hume thinks such a stance or set of attitudes would be best for most human beings and also how he can support that endorsement while holding just such ‘sceptical’ attitudes himself. The chapter makes a case for the indispensability of a proper understanding of the intricate structure and role of the ‘Conclusion’ of Book One of the Treatise for any serious account of Hume's philosophy.

Keywords: Hume; scepticism; Treatise; philosophical reflection; Book One

Chapter.  9847 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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