1st Edition

Hume’s Moral Philosophy and Contemporary Psychology

Edited By Philip A. Reed, Rico Vitz Copyright 2018
    398 Pages
    by Routledge

    398 Pages
    by Routledge

    Recent work at the intersection of moral philosophy and the philosophy of psychology has dealt mostly with Aristotelian virtue ethics. The dearth of scholarship that engages with Hume’s moral philosophy, however, is both noticeable and peculiar. Hume's Moral Philosophy and Contemporary Psychology demonstrates how Hume’s moral philosophy comports with recent work from the empirical sciences and moral psychology. It shows how contemporary work in virtue ethics has much stronger similarities to the metaphysically thin conception of human nature that Hume developed, rather than the metaphysically thick conception of human nature that Aristotle espoused. It also reveals how contemporary work in moral motivation and moral epistemology has strong affinities with themes in Hume’s sympathetic sentimentalism.

    Introduction: Hume's Moral Philosophy and Contemporary Psychology: An Overview

    Philip A. Reed

    1. Beyond the "Disease of the Learned": Hume on Passional Disorders

    Margaret Watkins

    2. Hume on the Rarity of Virtue

    Philip A. Reed

    3. Spontaneity, Intuition, and Humean Virtue

    Erin Frykholm

    4. Character, Culture, and Humean Virtue Ethics: Insights from Situationism and Confucianism

    Rico Vitz

    5. Empahty, Autism, and Hume

    Katharina Paxman Renick

    6. Cultivating Empathic Concern and Altruistic Motivation: Insights from Hume and Batson

    Annette Pierdziwol

    7. Preserving Practicality: In Defense of Hume's Sympathy-Based Ethics

    Lorenzo Greco

    8. Hume, Bloom, and Moral Inclusion

    Anne Jacobson

    9. Empathy, Interdependency, and Morality: Building from Hume's Account

    Lorraine Besser

    10. The Philosophical Power of Hume's Notion of Love

    Christine Swanton

    11. Hume on the Methods and Limits of the Science of Human Nature

    Saul Traiger

    12. Hume on Moral Motivation

    Michael Gill

    13. Passionate Regulation and the Practicality of Reason

    Elizabeth Radcliffe

    14. Hume on Affective Leadership

    Eric Schliesser

    Conclusion: Hume's Moral Philosophy and Contemporary Psychology: Future Directions

    Rico Vitz


    Philip A. Reed is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Canisius College, USA where he also codirects the Ethics and Justice Programs. His main areas of interest are in ethics, political philosophy, and moral psychology. His articles on Hume's moral psychology appear in such places as History of Philosophy Quarterly, Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, and Canadian Journal of Philosophy. He has also published articles in Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, and Christian Bioethics.

    Rico Vitz is Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at Azusa Pacific University, USA and serves as the Executive Vice President-Treasurer of the Hume Society. He is the author of Reforming the Art of Living: Nature, Virtue, and Religion in Descartes's Epistemology, co-editor of The Ethics of Belief: Individual and Social, and the editor of Turning East: Contemporary Philosophers and the Ancient Christian Faith.

    "The volume's warm and enthusiastic endorsement of recent empirical sciences and its relation to Hume is welcome . . . It is great to have in a single volume a variety of illuminating ways in which Hume's morals are relevant to recent empirical work."Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

    "Hume's Moral Philosophy and Contemporary Psychology is an exceptionally interesting and illuminating reflection on Hume’s contributions to moral philosophy and in particular its relations, both methodological and doctrinal, to contemporary cognitive psychology."John Bricke, Professor of Philosophy Emeritus, University of Kansas

    "I consider this book a treasured contribution to moral psychology. All of the chapters provide valuable insight into the relevance of Hume's moral philosophy to contemporary psychology and will be of interest to scholars and students interested in these discussions. The chapters are well-ordered in accordance with the questions they attempt to answer, and the style of writing is very clear. The introduction chapter by Reed and the conclusion chapter by Vitz are especially helpful for the reader who wants to make a straight to the point reading." - Saliha Bayır, Metapsychology Online Reviews