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Connaissance et passion : Penser la causalité et la bonne cause à partir des Lumières

Abstract : In the Enlightenment period, authors like Leibniz, Voltaire, Hume and Rousseau engaged in a reflection about the nature of knowledge. In this contribution, the foundations and limits of knowledge will be explored from the point of view of the question of causality. To understand the causal relationship between two events is, following Hume, to establish associations of ideas. However, it is necessary to submit those different associations to refutation. Thus it appears necessary to distinguish cause and effect, on one hand, and series of occurrences, on the other hand. Similarly, a scientifically refutable explanation is to be distinguished from an explanation that can neither be proved nor disproved. The analysis shows that the confusion between different types of explanation obscures the role of moralizing passions in causal explanations that claim to be scientific. At the same time, the author argues that scientific inquiry, in particular in the social sciences, cannot emancipate itself from a type of engagement with its objects that is at once moral and emotive.
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Submitted on : Thursday, November 4, 2021 - 12:36:42 PM
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Gil Delannoi. Connaissance et passion : Penser la causalité et la bonne cause à partir des Lumières. Raisons politiques, 2017, 65, pp.31 - 48. ⟨10.3917/rai.065.0031⟩. ⟨hal-03414350⟩



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