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Political Economy Commons

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2006

Connecticut College

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Full-Text Articles in Political Economy

Smith’S Humean Criticism Of Hume’S Account Of The Origin Of Justice, Spencer J. Pack, Eric Schliesser Jan 2006

Smith’S Humean Criticism Of Hume’S Account Of The Origin Of Justice, Spencer J. Pack, Eric Schliesser

Economics Faculty Publications

Adam Smith criticizes David Hume's account of the origin of and continuing adherence to the rule of law for being not sufficiently Humean. Hume explained that adherence to the rule of law originated in the self-interest to restrain self-interest. According to Smith, Hume does not pay enough attention to the passions of resentment and admiration, which have their source in the imagination. Smith offers a more naturalistic and evolutionary account of the psychological preconditions of the establishment and morality of justice than Hume had. Smith severs the intimate connection that Hobbes and Hume made between justice and property.