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Kant and the EmpiricistsUnderstanding Understanding$
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Wayne Waxman

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195177398

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0195177398.001.0001

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Reasoning Reasonably

Reasoning Reasonably

Chapter:
(p.536) 19 Reasoning Reasonably
Source:
Kant and the Empiricists
Author(s):

Wayne Waxman

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0195177398.003.0020

This chapter examines Hume’s theory of empirical reason, and the difference between its rational and its irrational exercise (reasoning reasonably and unreasonably). The theory has five structural levels: (1) reasoning from one matter of fact or real existence to another takes the form of an inference from an impression to an idea; (2) necessary connections between cause and effect; (3) past experience and our remembrance of the constant junction of distinct, successive, contiguous objects; (4) our belief in the uniformity of nature; and (5) customary association. The role of customary association in regulating empirical rationality, first species probable reasoning, and contrariety are discussed.

Keywords:   David Hume, empirical reason, reasoning, association, rationality, contrariety

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