Filosoficky Casopis 2 (65):297-315 (2017)

Tomas Hribek
Czech Academy of Sciences
[Empiricism, Naturalism, and Ideas] The author analyses the modern reception of key themes in Hume’s philosophy during the past century. The first part presents Hume’s version of three such themes – empi­ricism, naturalism and the theory of ideas. The following three parts give an exposition of modern forms of each of these themes, with the choice of modern reception being directed to those contemporary authors who not only developed Hume’s motifs in the most original way, but who also explicitly traced the origin of their modern theory to Hume. For this reason, in the second part, which deals with the reception of empiricism in logical positivism, Hans Reichenbach and his treatment of Hume’s problem of inductive knowledge is discussed. In the third part, dealing with naturalism, the obvious choice is the most influential version of this doctrine in the work of W. V. O. Quine. The fourth part deals with the modern reception of Hume’s theory of ideas in a recent monograph by Jerry Fodor. The author considers Hume’s naturalism as the most live part of Hume’s legacy. Empirismus has, after all, been considerably transformed in content, or has even been rejected by later philosophers; while Fodor’s updating of the theory of ideas does not offer an adequate answer to the question of the place of thinking and intentionality in the material world.
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