Waiting for Hume

In Marina Frasca-Spada & P. J. E. Kail (eds.), Impressions of Hume. Oxford University Press. pp. 59 (2005)

It was David Hume’s great sceptical argument about non-demonstrative reasoning—the problem of induction—that hooked me on philosophy. I am still wriggling, but in the present essay I will not consider how the Humean challenge to justify our inductive practices might be met; rather, I ask why we had to wait until Hume for the challenge to be raised. The question is a natural one to ask, given the intense interest in scepticism before Hume for as far back as we can see in the history of philosophy, and given that Hume’s sceptical argument is so simple and so fundamental. It is not so easy to answer. I am no historian of philosophy, and given the pull that the problem of induction exerts on my own philosophical thinking, I know there is a considerable risk that the historical speculations I consider here will turn out to be worthlessly anachronistic. But I hope not.
Keywords Hume
Categories (categorize this paper)
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 51,554
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

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
49 ( #190,679 of 2,331,046 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #589,142 of 2,331,046 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes