David Hume's Humanity: The Philosophy of Common Life and Its Limits
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Scott Yenor argues that David Hume's reputation as a skeptic is greatly exaggerated. In David Hume's Humanity, Yenor shows how Hume's skepticism is a moment that leads Hume to defend a philosophy grounded in the inescapable assumptions of common life. Humane virtues reflect the proper reaction to the complex mixture of human faculties that define the human condition. These gentle virtues best find their home in the modern commercial republic, such as England. Hume's defense of both common life philosophy and humanity are, however, flawed by his secretly dogmatic assumptions about the nature of history and his enlightened approach to religious teachings and psychology. This study makes the case that Hume's manner of grounding philosophy in common life is essential to any reinvigoration of the humanities. It ultimately holds that Hume's practice of that philosophy is seriously flawed, but a better philosophy of common life is available.
Yenor, Scott, "David Hume's Humanity: The Philosophy of Common Life and Its Limits" (2016). Faculty & Staff Authored Books. 450.