Hartley, David (1705–1757)

DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-DB036-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved November 30, 2022, from

Article Summary

David Hartley commands a distinctive place in Enlightenment thinking for his attempt to establish an empiricist epistemology upon a foundation of ontological materialism – in other words, a philosophy of mind that incorporates a physiology of the brain. He also set forth an optimistic vision of human progress which was nonetheless cast within the framework of a transcendental theology. Though his views might seem to be a singular fusion of disparate strands, they nevertheless epitomized much liberal and advanced English thinking of the time, and exercised considerable influence upon the philosophical radicalism of subsequent generations.

    Citing this article:
    Porter, Roy. Hartley, David (1705–1757), 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-DB036-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
    Copyright © 1998-2022 Routledge.

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