In praise of self: Hume's love of fame

European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 2 (1):69-100 (2006)
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Abstract

In this paper I discuss Hume’s theory of pride and the ‘remarkable mechanism’ of sympathy. In the first part of the paper I outline the ways in which Hume’s theory can accommodate the sense in which the passions are directed on things or possess intentionality while still holding to his view that passions are simple feelings. In the second part of the paper I consider a problem internal to Hume’s account of pride which arises in his discussion of the love of fame and the functioning of sympathy; I explain how the tensions can be reconciled by recognising that Hume’s theory of sympathy is more nuanced than has commonly been recognized. In the third part I turn back to the evaluation of Hume’s theory of pride and argue that while it is unfair to complain that Hume does not make self-evaluation a central component of pride, Hume’s treatment of the idea of self in his theory of the passions is inadequate because he can make no proper room for the phenomenon of vicarious pride.

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Muzzly Martin
Georgia State University

References found in this work

Hume's Cognitive Theory of Pride.Donald Davidson - 1976 - Journal of Philosophy 73 (19):744-757.
Hume's Analysis of Pride.Annette Baier - 1978 - Journal of Philosophy 75 (1):27-40.
Scepticism About Persons in Book II of Hume's Treatise.Donald C. Ainslie - 1999 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 37 (3):469-492.
Hume’s Reflections on the Identity and Simplicity of Mind.Donald C. Ainslie - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (3):557-578.

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