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Progress and Decline

Ferguson’s ambivalence
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Part of the International Archives of the History of Ideas / Archives internationales d’histoire des idées book series (ARCH, volume 191)

Keywords

Moral Realism Civic Virtue Spontaneous Order Moral Progress Moral Perfection 
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References

  1. 1240.
    Effected by divinely endued drives. Essay, p. 14; P.I., pp. 190, 313.Google Scholar
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    Robert Heilbroner has argued for a similar dualism in Adam Smith’s work. The present discussion owes much to his analysis. Heilbroner, ‘The Paradox of Progress’, pp. 243–62.Google Scholar
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    Whitney, Primitivism and the Idea of Progress, p. 22. A number of scholars have concluded that progress, for Ferguson, was not necessarily inevitable. Duncan Forbes, for example, suggests that Ferguson’s history ‘certainly does not belong to the history of the idea of progress’. Forbes, Introduction to Essay p. xiv. See also Lehmann, Adam Ferguson, pp. 148–9 and Hopfl, ‘From Savage to Scotsman’, p. 37.Google Scholar
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