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“The British Empiricists” (Locke, Berkeley and Hume)

Outline of Epistemology Paper
1.Intro
a). Introduce the topic
b).Present your thesis
c).Provide info about how you will support your thesis
Locke (provide some transition that makes sense of your turn to Locke)
a). His Empiricism
– Deduction vs. Induction
– Certainty vs.Degrees of Assent
b). Rejection of innate ideas (tabula rasa)
c).Ideas from Experience and Qualities
d). "Knowledge"
2. His limitations as an empiricist
a). Know self by intuition
b). Know God by reason
c).Substance
d). Primary/Secondary quality distinction
Berkeley( Provide some transition that makes sense of your turn to Berkeley)
1). His Empiricism (and how he builds upon Locke)
a). Subjective Idealism
b).The sources of ideas
c).Esse est percipi (to be is to be perceived)
d). Berkeley’s rejection of Locke’s view on:
-Substance
-Primary/Secondary quality distinction
2) His limitations as an empiricist
a). The self
b).God
Hume (Provide some transition that makes sense of your turn to Hume)
1). His Empiricism ( And how he builds upon Locke and Berkeley)
a). Impressions and Ideas
b). Hume’s Fork (and rejection of metaphysics and theology)
2). That Hume is a thoroughgoing empiricist
a). Here you are more on your own- you undoubtedly want to raise his view that without cause and effect it really is not possible to make any sense of our experience or reality at all but that irrespective of the importance of the principle of causality Hume accepts the logical conclusion of empiricism that knowledge of causality is impossible.( You probably ought to bring out Hume’s argument against the possibility of knowing of causality through either reason or experience- reliance on his "fork"-and that the argument against knowledge of causality through experience itself rest on another application of his "fork" to the possibility of knowing of induction).
b). To argue that this reveals that Hume is a thoroughgoing empiricist you might want to contrast the fact that Locke and Berkeley smuggled in non-empiricist principles (substance and God respectively) to, in effect, preserve or explain the coherence of our experience or reality with Hume’s acceptance of the full implications of empiricism-that no claims about the external world are warranted.
4.Conclusion. Review you thesis and the basics of how you have supported it.

Note: Teacher’s requirement is that every transition from one to another person should be with point to point, section to section and must be made smoothly and in a manner that makes it completely easy for your reader to understand what you are currently trying to express, why and how it comes together with your other points in a logical sequence.

 

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