Hume and Thick Connexions
Blackburn (Simon)
Source: Blackburn - Essays in Quasi-Realism
Paper - Abstract

Paper Summary


Philosophers Index Abstract

    In this paper I dispute the view, propounded by John Wright, Galen Strawson and others, that Hume is a "causal realist". I argue that the realist interpretation depends upon offering Hume an impoverished menu of options. When we take into account Hume's method, and the avowed influence of Hutcheson not only on the later parts but upon the metaphysical foundations of the Treatise, Hume comes into view as a sophisticated projectivist or quasi-realist about causation1, as he was about morals. This alone reconciles the realist sounding passages of the Treatise with Hume's principles of meaning and understanding.

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