David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
History of Philosophy Quarterly 26 (2):139-157 (2009)
I discuss Hume's views about whether simplicity and generality are positive features of explanations. In criticizing Hobbes and others who base their systems of morality on self interest, Hume diagnoses their errors as resulting from a "love of simplicity". These worries about whether simplicity is a positive feature of explanations emerge in Hume's thinking over time. But Hume does not completely reject the idea that it's good to seek simple explanations. What Hume thinks we need is good judgment about when we are going too far in our search for simple explanations. These worries about simplicity are not unique to Hume. We can see versions of them in the work of Hutcheson, Smith, and Reid.
|Keywords||Hume simplicity explanation|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Lorne Falkenstein (1995). Hume and Reid on the Simplicity of the Soul. Hume Studies 21 (1):25-45.
Ruth Weintraub (2005). A Humean Conundrum. Hume Studies 31 (2):211-224.
Erik Wielenberg (2009). Dawkins's Gambit, Hume's Aroma, and God's Simplicity. Philosophia Christi 11 (1):113-127.
Donald C. Ainslie (2001). Hume's Reflections on the Identity and Simplicity of Mind. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (3):557-578.
Arnold Zellner, Hugo A. Keuzenkamp & Michael McAleer (eds.) (2001). Simplicity, Inference and Modeling: Keeping It Sophisticatedly Simple. Cambridge University Press.
Aaron Sloman, Simplicity and Ontologies The Trade-Off Between Simplicity of Theories and Sophistication of Ontologies.
Jerome M. Segal (1999). Graceful Simplicity: Toward a Philosophy and Politics of Simple Living. H. Holt & Co..
Crispin Wright (2001). Is Hume's Principle Analytic? In Bob Hale & Crispin Wright (eds.), Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic. Oxford University Press 307-333.
R. J. Hawkins (1976). Simplicity, Resemblance and Contrariety in Hume's Treatise. Philosophical Quarterly 26 (102):24-38.
Noriaki Iwasa (2011). Hume's Alleged Success Over Hutcheson. Synthesis Philosophica 26 (2):323-336.
Elliott Sober (1975). Simplicity. Clarendon Press.
James Baillie (2000). Hume on Morality. Routledge.
Jerome M. Segal (2002). Graceful Simplicity: The Philosophy and Politics of the Alternative American Dream. University of California Press.
Jeffrey Ketland (2002). Hume = Small Hume. Analysis 62 (1):92–93.
Added to index2010-12-22
Total downloads123 ( #29,761 of 1,793,059 )
Recent downloads (6 months)15 ( #50,793 of 1,793,059 )
How can I increase my downloads?