The rhetorical strategy of William Paley's Natural theology (1802): Part 2, William Paley's Natural theology and the challenge of atheism [Book Review]

Abstract
The first part of this two-part article suggested that William Paley’s Natural theology should be viewed as the culmination of a complex psychological strategy for inculcating religious and moral sentiments. Having focused in Part 1 on Paley’s rhetoric, we now turn our attention to the philosophical part of the programme. This article attempts to settle the vexed question of how far Paley responded to the devastating critique of the teleological argument contained in Hume’s posthumously published Dialogues concerning natural religion . It also identifies tensions that arose in Natural theology between the rhetorical and intellectual sides of the stratagem. In response to Erasmus Darwin’s evolutionary theories, Paley asserted that the divinely designed architecture of nature had remained unchanged since the creation. But the more he emphasized the preordained nature of providence, its effectuation through mechanical dispositions, the less room there appeared to be for particular interventions. Section 2 concentrates on Paley’s efforts to reconcile this model of a law-governed, mechanical universe, with the belief in a personal God who was active in worldly affairs. It therefore challenges the view, long unquestioned in the historical literature, that Paley’s Deity was merely a watchmaker, who had remained idle since the Creation.Keywords: William Paley; Natural theology; David Hume; Watchmaker
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1016/j.shpsa.2010.03.004
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 31,812
External links

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
Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion.David Hume - 2007 - In Elizabeth Schmidt Radcliffe, Richard McCarty, Fritz Allhoff & Anand Vaidya (eds.), Philosophical Review. Blackwell. pp. 338-339.
An Enquiry concerning the Principles of Morals.David Hume & Tom L. Beauchamp - 2000 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 190 (2):230-231.
Buffon: A Life in Natural History.Jacques Roger, Sarah Lucille Bonnefoi & L. Pearce Williams - 1998 - Journal of the History of Biology 31 (2):298-300.

View all 14 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Publishing and the Classics: Paley's Natural Theology and the Nineteenth-Century Scientific Canon.A. Fyfe - 2002 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 33 (4):729-751.
Newman and Natural Theology.Patrick J. Fletcher - 2008 - Newman Studies Journal 5 (2):26-42.
Intelligent Design: The Original Version.Francisco J. Ayala - 2003 - Theology and Science 1 (1):9-32.
Natural Theology.William Paley - 2007 - In Elizabeth Schmidt Radcliffe, Richard McCarty, Fritz Allhoff & Anand Vaidya (eds.), Late Modern Philosophy: Essential Readings with Commentary. Blackwell.
Paley's Inductive Inference to Design.Jonah N. Schupbach - 2005 - Philosophia Christi 7 (2):491-502.
Paley's Argument for Design.Graham Oppy - 2002 - Philo 5 (2):161-173.
Paley's Teleological Argument and Its Significance.Bill Spencer - 2006 - Dialogue: Journal of Phi Sigma Tau 48 (2-3):62 - 65.
Revisiting the ‘Reformed Objection’ to Natural Theology.Michael Sudduth - 2009 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 1 (2):37-62.
William Paley.Author unknown - 2001 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Teleology.Andre Ariew - 2007 - In David L. Hull & Michael Ruse (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to the Philosophy of Biology. Cambridge University Press.
Added to PP index
2010-09-14

Total downloads
22 ( #259,087 of 2,231,535 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #445,507 of 2,231,535 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature