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date: 24 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This paper examines the principal objections that Hume’s Scots contemporaries, George Campbell, James Beattie, and Thomas Reid raised against his views of testimony, belief, and the “theory of ideas.” In opposition to Kant’s claim that “Reid, Oswald, and Beattie” had “appealed to common sense as an oracle when insight and research [failed them]” and had “[taken] for granted what [Hume] meant to call into doubt while emphatically, and often with great indignation, demonstrating what he had never thought to question” it is shown that, in each case, Hume’s critics understood him correctly and raised serious objections. But it is also shown that Hume’s work contains all the materials necessary to mount an effective response to their objections.

Keywords: Hume, Reid, Beattie, Campbell, testimony, mental representation, ideas, belief, perception, realism, materialism

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