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Vinny Gambini
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by AbrahamS97 Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:16 am

I picked answer choice E. Perhaps this was out of some familiarity and respect for David Hume, but I also believe it makes the most sense. The correct answer, B, states that invoking Hume adds credence to theory of soft determinism. How does simply mentioning that he had a similar view on determinism do this? But specifically, why is E wrong?

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Atticus Finch
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Re: Q19

by ohthatpatrick Tue Nov 14, 2017 1:49 pm

Namedropping Hume, for the sake of saying "this idea has been around for a while now, is primarily to show that Ayer isn't a lone wolf with some kooky idea.

Line 29-31 claims that the idea that "determinism can coexist with free will" has "long been argued". So bringing up Hume is supporting that claim.

(B) and (E) are the same in terms of
"add credence" or "add intellectual respectability"
so they diverge based on the second half

Are we talking about
"the theory of soft determinism"
"people who think the brain should not be described mechanistically"

P2 in psg B is talking about the theory of soft determinism, which thinks that a mechanistic description of the brain is compatible with the notion of free will.

That's why (B) is better than (E). Neither Ayer nor Hume are accused of arguing that the brain should not be described mechanistically.

Hope this helps.
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Vinny Gambini
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Re: Q19

by JasonB370 Sat Nov 10, 2018 1:47 am

I get that he is citing Hume to bolster Ayer's credibility, which does add credence to the theory of SD, but isn't this quite literally done by the process of (A): characterizing Ayer as someone who is not an original thinker?