• A photograph of a drawing of a crowd watching a theatrical performance inside a nineteenth-century style theatre hall

The myth of the selfless philosopher

By Enrico Galvagni There is a myth that spans the history of western thought: the myth of the selfless philosopher. True philosophers, the myth says, are ethereal creatures who dropped every trace of pride, egoism, and vainglory to devote their…

David Hume and Scottish Philosophy

By Gordon Graham Not so very long ago, it was quite widely accepted that Britain’s most significant contribution to the development of philosophy was ‘empiricism’ and that its great exponents were the Englishman John Locke, the Irishman George Berkeley, and…

The semantic dimension of Newtonian Power

By Asher Jiang The concept of physical power in its modern forms has been introduced by Sir Isaac Newton in his great work Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica. Although Newton has embedded this concept into a precise mathematical framework, the power…

The Absence of God and Its Contextual Significance for Hume

In our featured article this week, “The Absence of God and Its Contextual Significance for Hume”, David Fergusson of the University of Edinburgh sets Hume’s thoroughgoing religious scepticism within the context of the Scottish Enlightenment. Much of Hume scholarship today…

Realism and Scepticism

By Gordon Graham For the Scottish philosophers of the 18th and 19th centuries, Hume was the great ‘sceptic’ awaiting an answer, which many of them thought Thomas Reid had provided. Thanks to Norman Kemp Smith’s seminal papers, philosophers in the…

Scottish Philosophy: Neglect and Renewal

By Gordon Graham Philosophy played a key role in the curriculum of the Scottish universities from their foundation in the 15th century to the closing decade of the 19th century. By the middle of the 20th century, however, Hume’s great…

Gordon Graham

Scottish Philosophy: Project and Legacy

By Gordon Graham The Scottish philosophical tradition found its richest and most influential expression in the investigations Scottish philosophers of the 18th century conducted in their project of a ‘science of human nature’. This project, uniquely, tackled traditional philosophical problems…