Rousseau, Clarke, Butler and critiques of deism

Rousseau’s stance on natural religion, revealed religion and their relation are outlined (section 1), and then his agreements and disagreements with Samuel Clarke (section 2). After a survey of Joseph Butler's critique of deism (section 3), Rousseau’s arguments emerge as capable of supplying a counter-critique sufficient to show that deism could claim to have survived the eighteenth-century undefeated (section 4). If the attempted refutation of theistic arguments on the parts of David Hume and of Immanuel Kant was inconclusive (section 5), then the survival of deism up to the present turns out to represent a serious metaphysical option (section 6)
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DOI 10.1080/0960878042000253097
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