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Pols 250 fall term notes:secret slides part 5 final fall lecture.docx

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Political Studies
POLS 250
Colin Farrelly

Pols 250 fall term notes: secret slide part 5 (David hume)  Secret slide 1 o Hume  Scottish philosopher (influenced utilitarianism (bentham and Mill) and conservatism (Burke)  Doesn’t believe morality is premised on religion  Central concern= limits of reason  Rejects: claims of natural law, natural rights, social contract (especially Locke)  Morality and political institutions are premised on “the passions” (not reason or faith)  Secret slide 2 o Hume Continued  His account of knowledge is based on sense-experience  Put philosophy on a solid foundation (experience and observation)  His account of causation  Secret slide 3 o Moral Motivation  Example: child falls off her bike, you are moved to help comfort the child  Why?: Because laws of nature or a social contract dictates that you help.(Hume says no)  Sympathy and the passions move us, we feel the childs pain/discomfort.  Person who does not help is not being irrational; they just lack the ability to sympathize with the childs suffering  Secret slide 4 o Hume  “reason is and ought only to be the slave of the passions.” (treatise of Human Nature-Hume)  Passion supplies the goal (reason directs us by suggesting means for the satisfaction of desires=instrumental.  Example: I want pizza for lunch
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