Hume, Reason and Morality
A Legacy of Contradiction
AUTHOR: Botros, Sophie
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Covering an important theme in Humean studies, this book focuses on Hume's hugely influential attempt in book three of his Treatise of Human Nature to derive the conclusion that morality is a matter of feeling, not reason, from its link with action.
Claiming that Hume's argument contains a fundamental contradiction that has gone unnoticed in modern debate, this fascinating volume contains a refreshing combination of historical-scholarly work and contemporary analysis that seeks to expose this contradiction and therefore provide a significant contribution to current scholarship in the area.
Sophie Botros begins by pointing out that a contradiction concerning whether reason can influence action, or is wholly powerless, occurs in the intermediary premiss. She then moves on to draw out the consequences for recent meta-ethics of the failure to acknowledge this contradiction. Finally, highlighting the root of the argument's power in an article of naturalistic dogma, she suggests how it may be possible to restore to our moral concepts their traditional and integral link with both truth and motivation.
A significant and thought-provoking addition to this popular field of study, Hume, Reason and Moralityis undoubtedly an important resource for moral philosophers interested in meta-ethics and practical reason, as well as Humean scholars.
PUBLICATION DATE: 3/30/2006