Hume's Touchstone

Hume Studies 36 (1):51-60 (2011)
Abstract
At the end of part 3 of Book 1 of his Treatise,1 Hume had given a touchstone by which to judge any account of the human mind, namely that, where other animals appear to display the same cognitive operation that we do, our account applies as well to them as to us.2 He tests his own account of causal inference this way and finds that it comes through with flying colors, since the effects of experience of constant conjunctions on animal minds is just as he has claimed it to be on ours. Some of their actions, such as nest building and sitting on their eggs till they hatch, are "extraordinary instances of sagacity" (T 1.3.16.5; SBN 177), but on other matters, they, like us, learn from experience, so that the older one ..
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