David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Metaphilosophy 37 (2):210–221 (2006)
This article is a discussion of Hume's maxim Nothing we imagine is absolutely impossible. First I explain this maxim and distinguish it from the principle Whatever cannot be imagined (conceived), is impossible. Next I argue that Thomas Reid's criticism of the maxim fails and that the arguments by Tamar Szábo Gendler and John Hawthorne for the claim that "it is uncontroversial that there are cases where we are misled" by the maxim are unconvincing. Finally I state the limited but real value of the maxim: it does help us, in certain cases, reliably to make up our minds. Along the way I show that Reid, his criticism of the maxim notwithstanding, actually employs it, and I furthermore argue that the principle What is inconceivable, is impossible is spurious.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|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
Stephen Cade Hetherington (1991). Conceivability and Modal Knowledge. In Tamara Horowitz (ed.), Thought Experiments in Science and Philosophy. Rowman and Littlefield.
M. Oreste Fiocco (2007). Conceivability, Imagination and Modal Knowledge. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (2):364-380.
Philip Hugly & Charles Sayward (1995). What’s So Special About Sentences? Communication and Cognition 28 (4):409-25.
Sonia Roca-Royes (2011). Conceivability and De Re Modal Knowledge. Noûs 45 (1):22-49.
Robert Johnson (1998). Weakness Incorporated. History of Philosophy Quarterly 15 (3):349 - 367.
Jonathan Ichikawa & Benjamin Jarvis (2012). Rational Imagination and Modal Knowledge. Noûs 46 (1):127 - 158.
Jordan Howard Sobel (1997). Kant's Compass. Erkenntnis 46 (3):365-392.
Albert Casullo (1979). Reid and Mill on Hume's Maxim of Conceivability. Analysis 39 (4):212--219.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads35 ( #50,473 of 1,102,974 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #297,509 of 1,102,974 )
How can I increase my downloads?