Hexwood: the name 'Hume' (spoilers)
hallieod at indigo.ie
Thu Apr 12 11:07:11 EDT 2001
>I was struck by the use of the name Hume in "Hexwood". In the book,
>Hume is noted as a shortening of human, but hume also means 'earth'
>and, as exhume means 'to dig up', hume could refer to Hume
>(Martellian/Merlin) having been buried on Earth.
>In my quest for background, I looked up Hume as a given name, and
>came across this information about the 18C Scottish philosopher,
>David Hume: -
>"He rejected the possibility of certainty in knowledge, finding in
>the mind only a series of sensations ('impressions'), and discounted
>the existing notion of causation: we are aware of events in pairs,
>but although we can observe that one constantly follows another we
>can never be certain that it must follow."
>I find this fascinating in the context of the story told in
>"Hexwood", where nothing is certain, once the story gets
>going. Because the Bannus is changing the state of play for most of
>the book, we really can't make assumptions about the logical
>progression of events and most the characters that realise they are
>being tricked place less reliance on the certainty of facts.
>I wonder if DWJ knew of David Hume when she wrote "Hexwood"? Does
>anyone know if she has talked about the origins of the name 'Hume'?
I wouldn't even hazard a guess as to whether she'd talked about the
name, intended the reference, or anything of the kind, but I *would*
bet she knew of him.
And just for a teeny, relatively boring synchronicity (relative to
Neil's, that is), who should pop up in my course book today but Hume.
Not that big a deal, but still, not someone I'd have necessarily
expected to be mentioned in a section on Romantic Poetry.
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