green numbers give full details.     |    back to list of philosophers     |     expand these ideas

Ideas of John Stuart Mill, by Text

[British, 1806 - 1873, Son of James Mill (close friend of Bentham). Member of Parliament in later life.]

1843 System of Logic
p.4 Mill is too imprecise, and is restricted to simple arithmetic [Kitcher]
p.9 What physical facts could underlie 0 or 1, or very large numbers? [Frege]
p.26 Mill says names have denotation but not connotation [Kripke]
p.35 Causes and conditions are not distinct, because we select capriciously from among them
p.37 Proper names are just labels for persons or objects, and the meaning is the object [Lycan]
p.99 Mill says logic and maths is induction based on a very large number of instances [Ayer]
p.112 Surprisingly, empiricists before Mill ignore explanation, which seems to transcend experience [Ruben]
p.150 A cause is the total of all the conditions which inevitably produce the result
p.201 Explanation is fitting of facts into ever more general patterns of regularity [Ruben]
p.244 Empirical theories of arithmetic ignore zero, limit our maths, and need probability to get started [Frege]
p.367 If two black and two white objects in practice produced five, what colour is the fifth one? [Lewis,CI]
1.04.3 p.90 Combining two distinct assertions does not necessarily lead to a single 'complex proposition'
1.6.2 p.123 The essence is that without which a thing can neither be, nor be conceived to be
2.6 p.258 Mill mistakes particular applications as integral to arithmetic, instead of general patterns [Dummett]
2.6.2 p.293 Things possess the properties of numbers, as quantity, and as countable parts
2.6.2 p.293 There are no such things as numbers in the abstract
2.6.2 p.293 Numbers have generalised application to entities (such as bodies or sounds)
2.6.2 p.295 Different parcels made from three pebbles produce different actual sensations
2.6.2 p.295 '2 pebbles and 1 pebble' and '3 pebbles' name the same aggregation, but different facts
2.6.2 p.296 3=2+1 presupposes collections of objects ('Threes'), which may be divided thus
2.6.3 p.297 Arithmetic is based on definitions, and Sums of equals are equal, and Differences of equals are equal
2.6.3 p.297 Numbers must be assumed to have identical units, as horses are equalised in 'horse-power'
3.05.2 p.132 The whole theory of induction rests on causes
3.05.3 p.383 The strict cause is the total positive and negative conditions which ensure the consequent
3.05.6 p.392 A cause is an antecedent which invariably and unconditionally leads to a phenomenon
3.06.6 p.392 Necessity is what will be, despite any alternative suppositions whatever
3.07 p.18 Causal inference is by spotting either Agreements or Differences [Lipton]
3.07/8 p.99 The Methods of Difference and of Agreement are forms of inference to the best explanation [Lipton]
3.14.4-5 p.126 Mill's methods (Difference,Agreement,Residues,Concomitance,Hypothesis) don't nail induction [Lipton]
3.24.5 p.150 We can't easily distinguish 102 horses from 103, but we could arrange them to make it obvious
3.24.5 p.150 Numbers denote physical properties of physical phenomena
3.24.5 p.151 Arithmetical results give a mode of formation of a given number
3.24.5 p.152 12 is the cube of 1728 means pebbles can be aggregated a certain way
3.24.5 p.153 Whatever is made up of parts is made up of parts of those parts
3.4.1 p.366 What are the fewest propositions from which all natural uniformities could be inferred?
3.5.2 p.178 Causation is just invariability of succession between every natural fact and a preceding fact
4.1.2 p.204 Inductive generalisation is more reliable than one of its instances; they can't all be wrong
4.1.2 p.204 Most perception is one-tenth observation and nine-tenths inference
4.2.1 p.195 The study of the nature of Abstract Ideas does not belong to logic, but to a different science
4.2.1 p.196 General conceptions are a necessary preliminary to Induction
4.2.1 p.196 We can focus our minds on what is common to a whole class, neglecting other aspects
4.2.2 p.196 We don't recognise comparisons by something in our minds; the concepts result from the comparisons
4.2.5 p.206 Clear concepts result from good observation, extensive experience, and accurate memory
Ch.4 p.55 Numbers are a very general property of objects [Brown,JR]
p.217 p.60 Mill's regularity theory of causation is based on an effect preceded by a conjunction of causes [Psillos]
p.245? p.95 Numbers must be of something; they don't exist as abstractions
p.255 p.63 In Mill's 'Method of Agreement' cause is the common factor in a range of different cases [Psillos]
p.256 p.64 In Mill's 'Method of Difference' the cause is what stops the effect when it is removed [Psillos]
p.32 p.399 All names are names of something, real or imaginary
p.339 [1974 ed] p.89 Necessity can only mean what must be, without conditions of any kind
p.610? p.95 The only axioms needed are for equality, addition, and successive numbers [Shapiro]
1857 On Liberty
p.119 Maximise happiness by an area of strict privacy, and an area of utilitarian interventions [Wolff,J]
p.124 Mill defends freedom as increasing happiness, but maybe it is an intrinsic good [Wolff,J]
p.125 Utilitarianism values liberty, but guides us on which ones we should have or not have [Wolff,J]
Ch.1 p.129 The will of the people is that of the largest or most active part of the people
Ch.1 p.135 Prevention of harm to others is the only justification for exercising power over people
Ch.1 p.135 Individuals have sovereignty over their own bodies and minds
Ch.1 p.136 Ethics rests on utility, which is the permanent progressive interests of people
Ch.1 p.136 Liberty arises at the point where people can freely and equally discuss things
Ch.1 p.138 True freedom is pursuing our own good, while not impeding others
Ch.2 p.176 The ethics of the Gospel has been supplemented by barbarous Old Testament values
Ch.4 p.214 The main argument for freedom is that interference with it is usually misguided
Ch.5 p.225 Restraint for its own sake is an evil
Ch.5 p.226 Individuals are not accountable for actions which only concern themselves
Ch.5 p.226 Society can punish actions which it believes to be prejudicial to others
Ch.5 p.229 Blocking entry to an unsafe bridge does not infringe liberty, since no one wants unsafe bridges
Ch.5 p.230 It is a crime for someone with a violent disposition to get drunk
Ch.5 p.232 Pimping and running a gambling-house are on the border between toleration and restraint
Ch.5 p.239 We need individual opinions and conduct, and State education is a means to prevent that
Ch.5 p.242 It is a crime to create a being who lacks the ordinary chances of a desirable existence
Ch.5 p.243 Benefits performed by individuals, not by government, help also to educate them
Ch.5 p.243 Individuals often do things better than governments
Ch.5 p.244 It is evil to give a government any more power than is necessary
Ch.5 p.246 People who transact their own business will also have the initiative to control their government
Ch.5 p.248 Aim for the maximum dissemination of power consistent with efficiency
Ch.5 p.249 The worth of a State, in the long run, is the worth of the individuals composing it
1861 Representative Government
p.97 How people vote should be on public record, so they can be held accountable [Wolff,J]
p.217-8 p.93 People can only participate in decisions in small communities, so representatives are needed
p.232 p.95 Direct democracy is inexperience judging experience, and ignorance judging knowledge
p.299 p.97 Voting is a strict duty, like jury service, and must only be aimed at the public good
1861 Utilitarianism
p.136 Moral rules protecting human welfare are more vital than local maxims
p.230 The English believe in the task of annihilating evil for the victory of good [Nietzsche]
Ch.1 p.255 Ultimate goods such as pleasure can never be proved to be good
Ch.2 p.145 Mill's qualities of pleasure is an admission that there are other good states of mind than pleasure [Ross]
Ch.2 p.257 Actions are right if they promote pleasure, wrong if they promote pain
Ch.2 p.257 Only pleasure and freedom from pain are desirable as ends
Ch.2 p.260 Better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied
Ch.2 p.270 Motive shows the worth of the agent, but not of the action
Ch.3 p.279 Orthodox morality is the only one which feels obligatory
Ch.3 p.284 With early training, any absurdity or evil may be given the power of conscience
Ch.4 p.288 General happiness is only desirable because individuals desire their own happiness
Ch.4 p.289 Virtues only have value because they achieve some further end
Ch.4 p.294 The will, in the beginning, is entirely produced by desire
Ch.5 p.305 No individual has the right to receive our benevolence
Ch.5 p.306 Rights are a matter of justice, not of benevolence
Ch.5 p.309 A right is a valid claim to society's protection
Ch.5 p.319 Utilitarianism only works if everybody has a totally equal right to happiness
1865 Examination of Sir Wm Hamilton's Philosophy
p.107 External objects are permanent possibilities of sensation
p.243 p.215 I judge others' feeling by analogy with my body and behaviour
1870 Autobiography
p.43 Mill wondered if he would be happy if all his aims were realised, and answered no [Critchley]
1874 Nature and Utility of Religion
p.119 Belief that an afterlife is required for justice is an admission that this life is very unjust
p.115 p.115 Nature dispenses cruelty with no concern for either mercy or justice
p.115 p.115 Killing is a human crime, but nature kills everyone, and often with great tortures
p.116 p.116 Hurricanes, locusts, floods and blight can starve a million people to death
p.116 p.116 Nature makes childbirth a miserable experience, often leading to the death of the mother
p.116 p.116 We don't get a love of 'order' from nature - which is thoroughly chaotic
p.117 p.117 Evil comes from good just as often as good comes from evil
p.119 p.119 No necessity ties an omnipotent Creator, so he evidently wills human misery