Francis Hutcheson's Influence On The Thoughts Of Adam Smith

1675 Words7 Pages
Topic: Economic ideas of Hutcheson and his influence on the thoughts of Adam Smith Nikita Singh (1313451) 5 Economics Honours Introduction Francis Hutcheson was an eminent eighteenth-century Scottish philosopher. His meticulous writings greatly influenced lives in Scotland, Great Britain, Europe and also the North American colonies. Hutcheson inspired people of varied genres. His theories of liberalism and political rights influenced historians and political science readers, while, his theories on human nature, including the idea of the inherent care and concern for others, internal senses including moral sense held significance for philosophers and psychologists. The latter played a crucial part in the evolution of the Scottish empirical scholars. All of Hutcheson’s theories held importance in the sphere of moral sentimentalism. Hutcheson’s works have such an…show more content…
What is basic to morality is the inclination for benevolence—an integral part of moral evaluations. Hutcheson set out to prove the existence of natural feelings, like benevolence, in order to show that not every action was performed out of self-interest. One of Hutcheson’s concerns were that one’s natural benevolence could get caught up with one’s selfish nature, although he hoped people could realize that natural benevolence will allow one to see the higher character and thus one could understand and encourage what is best for everyone. Hutcheson’s moral sense theory helped to conceptually evade the problems that stem from a stringent doctrine of egoism. He claimed that it is natural for one to want good things for others. When someone’s moral sense operates and they judge an action as morally wrong, the moral sense is not why they feel the wrongness, it is how they feel it. It is like an applause meter that evaluates the morality that is expressed in the sentiment. Thus the opinion of morality transits from a feeling to an
Open Document