Journal of the History of Philosophy 42 (3):261-275 (2004)

Rico Vitz
Azusa Pacific University
In this paper, I argue that Hume’s account of sympathy is substantially unchanged from the Treatise to the second Enquiry. I show that Hume uses the term ‘sympathy’ to refer to three different mental phenomena (a psychological mechanism or principle, a sentiment, and a conversion process) and that he consistently refers to sympathy as a cause of benevolent motivation. I attempt to resolve an apparent difficulty regarding sympathy and humanity by explaining how each is an ‘original principle’ in Hume’s sense. I conclude by suggesting how my interpretation might make a contemporary evaluation of Hume’s account of benevolent motivation possible.
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DOI 10.1353/hph.2004.0059
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Beyond Sympathy: Smith’s Rejection of Hume’s Moral Theory.Paul Sagar - 2017 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 25 (4):681-705.
Mencius, Hume, and the Virtue of Humanity: Sources of Benevolent Moral Development.Jeremiah Carey & Rico Vitz - 2020 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 28 (4):693-713.
The Alliance of Virtue and Vanity in Hume's Moral Theory.Philip A. Reed - 2012 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 93 (4):595-614.
Kinesthetic Empathy, Dance, and Technology.Andrew J. Corsa - 2016 - Polymath: An Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences Journal 6 (2):1-34.
Hume and Humanity as ‘the Foundation of Morals’.Tony Pitson - 2019 - Journal of Scottish Philosophy 17 (1):39-59.

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