An Essay Concerning Human Understanding Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What example does Locke use for an idea that is innate?

2. What does Locke say retention allows us to do?

3. Who proposed the notion that knowledge begins in doubt?

4. How does Locke use garlic to illustrate his argument about the qualities of things?

5. What does Locke say number indicate about a thing?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Locke say happens if two people have the same idea about a thing?

2. How does Locke define retention?

3. How does Locke define the faculty of perception?

4. What example does Locke use of natural principles?

5. What arguments does Locke make against Descartes' philosophy?

6. In what way is understanding limited, according to Locke?

7. How does Locke say ideas come to us?

8. What does Locke mean when he says that the mind is a blank slate?

9. How does Locke define discerning?

10. How does Locke use the concept of number in his discussion of primary qualities?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

How would a society predicated on the idea of innate knowledge differ from a society predicated on a Lockean epistemology in which knowledge is shaped by experience? Compare and contrast these societies.

Essay Topic 2

Using Locke's methodology, create a definition for an abstract word like esteem, or respect, or revenge or justice. (What other methods can you use? Which method is better?--i.e. more precise, or more effective?)

Essay Topic 3

Locke speculates that desire is unhappiness in the absence of previous delight--how does he handle the question of original experience, and how could his philosophy respond to the doctrine of original sin?

(see the answer keys)

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