Hume's Phenomenology of the Imagination

Journal of Scottish Philosophy 5 (1):31-45 (2007)
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This paper examines the role of the imagination in Hume's epistemology. Three specific powers of the imagination are identified – the imagistic, conceptual and productive – as well as three corresponding kinds of fictions based on the degree of belief contained in each class of ideas the imagination creates. These are generic fictions, real and mere fictions, and necessary fictions, respectively. Through these manifestations, it is emphasized, Hume presents the imagination both as the positive force behind human creativity and a subversive presence that transforms experience while at once making it possible.



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Timothy Costelloe
College of William and Mary

Citations of this work

A Puzzle about Fictions in the Treatise.Jonathan Cottrell - 2016 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 54 (1):47-73.
Resisting Tiny Heroes: Kant on the Mechanism and Scope of Imaginative Resistance.Morganna Lambeth - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (2):164-176.
Vulgar Habits and Hume's Double Vision Argument.Annemarie Butler - 2010 - Journal of Scottish Philosophy 8 (2):169-187.

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References found in this work

Cognition and commitment in Hume's philosophy.Don Garrett - 1997 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Mindsight: Image, Dream, Meaning.Colin McGinn - 2004 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
The Language of Imagination.Alan R. White - 1990 - Cambridge: Blackwell.
Hume's theory of the external world.Henry Habberley Price - 1940 - Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press.

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