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The Concealed Influence of Custom – Hume's Treatise from the Inside Out - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Concealed Influence of Custom: Hume's Treatise from the Inside Out

Jay L. Garfield


This volume provides a reading of Hume’s Treatise as a whole, foregrounding Hume’s understanding of custom and its role in the Treatise. It shows that Hume grounds his understanding of custom in its usage in English legal theory, and that he takes custom to be the foundation for normativity in all of its guises, whether moral, epistemic, or social. The book argues that Hume’s project in the Treatise is to provide a socially inflected cognitive science—to understand how persons are constituted through an interaction of individual psychology and their social matrix—and that custom provides the l ... More

Keywords: Hume, Treatise, human nature, skepticism, custom, naturalism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780190933401
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2019 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190933401.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jay L. Garfield, author
Director, Smith College Logic and Buddhist Studies programs