Substance and Causation : Locke's Inheritance and Hume's Criticism of Aristotelianism
The standard history of philosophy says that empiricism, first enunciated by John Locke, through the process of its transmission to George Berkley and David Hume, was brought by degrees to completion. But, in my view, such a description of British empiricism needs rewriting. In this paper, I trace the history of theories of causation, beginning with that of Francisco Su?rez, an early modern Scholastic, and thereby show that Locke and Hume take different attitudes toward Aristotelianism. Hume, who develops his epistemology as a theory of causation, follows Berkley and Malebranche in their criticism of an Aristotelian element of the scholastic theory of causation. By contrast, Locke, who, in spite of his criticism of the traditional concept of substance, develops his epistemology as a theory of substance and sees causation entirely in terms of substance and its essences, is faithful to Aristotelianism, even more so than Scholastics such as Su?rez.