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Hume Studies

Volume 42, Issue 1/2, April/November 2016

Matias Slavov
Pages 113-136

Hume on the Laws of Dynamics
The Tacit Assumption of Mechanism

I shall argue that when Hume refers to the laws of dynamics, he tacitly assumes a mechanism. Nevertheless, he remains agnostic on whether the hidden micro-constitution of bodies is machinelike. Hence this article comes to the following conclusion. Hume is not a full-blown mechanical philosopher. Still his position on dynamic laws and his concept of causation instantiate a tacitly mechanical understanding of the interactions of bodies.