Hume’s Dynamism: the Problem of Power Cover Image

Hume’s Dynamism: the Problem of Power
Hume’s Dynamism: the Problem of Power

Author(s): Augustín Riška
Subject(s): Philosophy, Epistemology, Philosophy of Science
Published by: Filozofický ústav SAV
Keywords: Force and vivacity; impressions; ideas; causality; natural powers; human powers; dispositional and actualist conception of power;

Summary/Abstract: In this essay, I investigate the dynamic foundations of Hume’s philosophy which is so heavily dependent upon Newton’s physics. Hume’s ubiquitous phrase „force and vivacity” is symptomatic of his dynamic, rather than voluntaristic, position that dominates his interpretation of impressions, ideas, and causality in particular. After pointing out some inconsistencies of Hume’s Newtonism, I concentrate on Hume’s treatment of power. It is a well-known fact that Hume rejected natural powers, in fear of their occult character, but accepted human powers giving them an actualist interpretation. I suggest that there is a dispositional treatment hidden in Hume’s statements which puts Hume in line with other philosophers of power.

  • Issue Year: 15/2008
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 20-28
  • Page Count: 9
  • Language: English