Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Causation and Laws of Nature in Early Modern Philosophy$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Walter Ott

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199570430

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199570430.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 05 August 2020



(p.197) 24 Intentionality
Causation and Laws of Nature in Early Modern Philosophy

Walter Ott (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Hume's chief weapon against causal realism is the argument from nonsense: for a view even to be a candidate for being right, it must first be intelligible to us. This chapter argues that, while Hume is not a positivist or verificationist, his account of intentionality, and in particular his denial of meaning to definite descriptions, makes for a starkly restrictive version of empiricism. In replacing the traditional account of mental propositions in terms of judgment with his own story about propositional attitudes, Hume makes it impossible to think of a thing by means of a definite description. This closes off any appeal to Lockean passive powers. This chapter goes on to argue that Hume's occasional talk of “relative ideas” does not threaten this basic position.

Keywords:   verificationism, positivism, intentionality, relative ideas, nonsense

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .