The ironic Hume

This portrait of Hume as an ironist is offered as a supplement to recent historical and biographical studies, and especially to Mossner's The Life o] David Hume. While others have commented on the irony in Hume's writings, Price goes further and suggests that irony is a key with which to unlock Hume's philosophical attitudes and beliefs. Since ap- preciation of irony depends on an awareness of context, Price interprets this to mean that Hume's writings must be read against the background of his life and intellectual milieu. He traces the development of Hume's use of irony through four successive stages, beginning with the formative influences on the early writings and concluding with the culmination of Hume's ironic style in the last works -- principally the Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion.
Keywords Hume
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DOI 10.1353/hph.2008.1254
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