Descartes on Forms and Mechanisms

Author: Helen Hattab

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 052151892X

Category: Mathematics

Page: 236

View: 7105

This book traces Descartes' groundbreaking theory of scientific explanation back to the mathematical demonstrations of Aristotelian physics, in the light of the arguments for and against substantial forms which were available to him. Will appeal to a wide range of readers interested in the philosophy and science of the early modern period.
Posted in Mathematics

Rene Descartes: Oxford Bibliographies Online Research Guide

Author: Oxford University Press

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780199808731

Category: Philosophy

Page: 24

View: 1393

This ebook is a selective guide designed to help scholars and students of social work find reliable sources of information by directing them to the best available scholarly materials in whatever form or format they appear from books, chapters, and journal articles to online archives, electronic data sets, and blogs. Written by a leading international authority on the subject, the ebook provides bibliographic information supported by direct recommendations about which sources to consult and editorial commentary to make it clear how the cited sources are interrelated related. This ebook is a static version of an article from Oxford Bibliographies Online: Philosophy, a dynamic, continuously updated, online resource designed to provide authoritative guidance through scholarship and other materials relevant to the study Philosophy. Oxford Bibliographies Online covers most subject disciplines within the social science and humanities, for more information visit
Posted in Philosophy

Spinoza and Dutch Cartesianism

Author: Alexander X. Douglas

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191046353

Category: Philosophy

Page: 176

View: 6059

Alexander X. Douglas offers a new understanding of Spinoza's philosophy by situating it in its immediate historical context. He defends a thesis about Spinoza's philosophical motivations and then bases an interpretation of his major works upon it. The thesis is that much of Spinoza's philosophy was conceived with the express purpose of rebutting a claim about the limitations of philosophy made by some of his contemporaries. They held that philosophy is intrinsically incapable of revealing anything of any relevance to theology, or in fact to any study of direct practical relevance to human life. Spinoza did not. He believed that philosophy reveals the true nature of God, and that God is nothing like what the majority of theologians, or indeed of religious believers in general, think he is. The practical implications of this change in the concept of God were profound and radical. As Douglas shows, many of Spinoza's theories were directed towards showing how the separation his opponents endeavoured to maintain between philosophical and non-philosophical (particularly theological) thought was logically untenable.
Posted in Philosophy


Physico-mathematics, Method & Corpuscular-Mechanism 1618-33

Author: John Schuster

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9400747462

Category: Science

Page: 632

View: 5464

This book reconstructs key aspects of the early career of Descartes from 1618 to 1633; that is, up through the point of his composing his first system of natural philosophy, Le Monde, in 1629-33. It focuses upon the overlapping and intertwined development of Descartes’ projects in physico-mathematics, analytical mathematics, universal method, and, finally, systematic corpuscular-mechanical natural philosophy. The concern is not simply with the conceptual and technical aspects of these projects; but, with Descartes’ agendas within them and his construction and presentation of his intellectual identity in relation to them. Descartes’ technical projects, agendas and senses of identity shifted over time, entangled and displayed great successes and deep failures, as he morphed from a mathematically competent, Jesuit trained graduate in neo-Scholastic Aristotelianism to aspiring prophet of a systematised corpuscular-mechanism, passing through stages of being a committed physico-mathematicus, advocate of a putative ‘universal mathematics’, and projector of a grand methodological dream. In all three dimensions—projects, agendas and identity concerns—the young Descartes struggled and contended, with himself and with real or virtual peers and competitors, hence the title ‘Descartes-Agonistes’.
Posted in Science

The Science of the Mind

Author: Owen J. Flanagan

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 9780262560566

Category: Philosophy

Page: 424

View: 3604

Consciousness emerges as the key topic in this second edition of Owen Flanagan's popular introduction to cognitive science and the philosophy of psychology. in a new chapter Flanagan develops a neurophilosophical theory of subjective mental life. He brings recent developments in the theory of neuronal group selection and connectionism to bear on the problems of the evolution of consciousness, qualia, the unique first-personal aspects of consciousness, the causal role of consciousness, and the function and development of the sense of personal identity. He has also substantially revised the chapter on cognitive psychology and artificial intelligence to incorporate recent discussions of connectionism and parallel distributed processing.
Posted in Philosophy

Geschichte der neuern philosophie

Author: Kuno Fischer

Publisher: N.A


Category: Philosophy, Modern

Page: N.A

View: 6441

Posted in Philosophy, Modern

Das unbeschriebene Blatt

Die moderne Leugnung der menschlichen Natur

Author: Steven Pinker

Publisher: S. Fischer Verlag

ISBN: 3104903905

Category: Social Science

Page: 768

View: 960

Mit einem aktuellen Vorwort zur Neuausgabe! Auf John Locke geht die Vorstellung zurück, der Mensch sei ein leeres Blatt, auf dem im Verlauf des Lebens die persönlichen Erfahrungen eingetragen werden. In seinem mittlerweile klassischen Buch »Das unbeschriebene Blatt. Die moderne Leugnung der menschlichen Natur« bezieht Bestseller-Autor Steven Pinker ganz die Gegenposition: Mit Witz, Brillanz und Gelehrsamkeit analysiert er die Geschichte dieser Idee und zeigt, wie falsch sie ist – mit allen kruden Auswirkungen auf Vorstellungen von Sexualität, Rasse, Kindererziehung, Intelligenz usw. Die Rolle der Gene wird systematisch unterschätzt; aber das bedeutet nicht, dass wir ihnen völlig ausgeliefert sind. Pinker zeigt nämlich auch, wie befreiend diese Sichtweise sein kann. Ein unterhaltsames und anschauliches Buch zur Natur des Menschen, ein echter Lesegenuss.
Posted in Social Science

Descartes: An Intellectual Biography

Author: Stephen Gaukroger

Publisher: Clarendon Press

ISBN: 0191519545

Category: Philosophy

Page: 520

View: 3712

René Descartes (1596-1650) is the father of modern philosophy, and one of the greatest of all thinkers. This is the first intellectual biography of Descartes in English; it offers a fundamental reassessment of all aspects of his life and work. Stephen Gaukroger, a leading authority on Descartes, traces his intellectual development from childhood, showing the connections between his intellectual and personal life and placing these in the cultural context of seventeenth century Europe. Descartes' early work in mathematics and science produced ground breaking theories, methods, and tools still in use today. This book gives the first full account of how this work informed and influenced the later philosophical studies for which, above all, Descartes is renowned. Not only were philosophy and science intertwined in Descartes' life; so were philosophy and religion. The Church of Rome found Galileo guilty of heresy in 1633; two decades earlier, Copernicus' theories about the universe had been denounced as blasphemous. To avoid such accusations, Descartes clothed his views about the relation between God and humanity, and about the nature of the universe, in a philosophical garb acceptable to the Church. His most famous project was the exploration of the foundations of human knowledge, starting from the proof of one's own existence offered in the formula Cogito ergo sum, `I am thinking therefore I exist'. Stephen Gaukroger argues that this was not intended as an exercise in philosophical scepticism, but rather to provide Descartes' scientific theories, influenced as they were by Copernicus and Galileo, with metaphysical legitimation. This book offers for the first time a full understanding of how Descartes developed his revolutionary ideas. It will be welcomed by all readers interested in the origins of modern thought.
Posted in Philosophy

Descartes' Metaphysical Physics

Author: Daniel Garber

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 9780226282190

Category: Philosophy

Page: 389

View: 1690

In this first book-length treatment of Descartes' important and influential natural philosophy, Daniel Garber is principally concerned with Descartes' accounts of matter and motion—the joint between Descartes' philosophical and scientific interests. These accounts constitute the point at which the metaphysical doctrines on God, the soul, and body, developed in writings like the Meditations, give rise to physical conclusions regarding atoms, vacua, and the laws that matter in motion must obey. Garber achieves a philosophically rigorous reading of Descartes that is sensitive to the historical and intellectual context in which he wrote. What emerges is a novel view of this familiar figure, at once unexpected and truer to the historical Descartes. The book begins with a discussion of Descartes' intellectual development and the larger project that frames his natural philosophy, the complete reform of all the sciences. After this introduction Garber thoroughly examines various aspects of Descartes' physics: the notion of body and its identification with extension; Descartes' rejection of the substantial forms of the scholastics; his relation to the atomistic tradition of atoms and the void; the concept of motion and the laws of motion, including Descartes' conservation principle, his laws of the persistence of motion, and his collision law; and the grounding of his laws in God.
Posted in Philosophy

Ideas and Mechanism

Essays on Early Modern Philosophy

Author: Margaret Dauler Wilson

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 1400864984

Category: Philosophy

Page: 546

View: 5661

For more than three decades, Margaret Wilson's essays on early modern philosophy have influenced scholarly debate. Many are considered classics in the field and remain as important today as they were when they were first published. Until now, however, they have never been available in book form and some have been particularly difficult to find. This collection not only provides access to nearly all of Wilson's most significant work, but also demonstrates the continuity of her thought over time. These essays show that Wilson possesses a keen intelligence, coupled with a fearlessness in tackling the work of early modern philosophers as well as the writing of modern commentators. Many of the pieces collected here respond to philosophical issues of continuing importance. The thirty-one essays gathered here deal with some of the best known early philosophers, including Descartes, Leibniz, Locke, Spinoza, and Berkeley. As this collection shows, Wilson is a demanding critic. She repeatedly asks whether the philosophers' arguments were adequate to the problems they were trying to solve and whether these arguments remain compelling today. She is not afraid to engage in complex argument but, at the same time, her own writing remains clear and fresh. Ideas and Mechanism is an essential collection of work by one of the leading scholars of our era. Originally published in 1999. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.
Posted in Philosophy

From Darwinian Metaphysics Towards Understanding the Evolution of Evolutionary Mechanisms

A Historical and Philosophical Analysis of Gene-Darwinism and Universal Darwinism

Author: Momme von Sydow

Publisher: Universitätsverlag Göttingen

ISBN: 3863950062

Category: Biology (General)

Page: 481

View: 9737

"Although Charles Darwin predicted that his theory 'would give zest to [...] metaphysics,' even he would be astonished at the variety of paths his theory has in fact taken. This holds with regard to both gene-Darwinism, a purified Darwinian approach biologizing the social sciences, and process- Darwinism found in the disciplines of psychology, philosophy of science, and economics. Although Darwinism is often linked to highly confirmed biological theories, some of its interpretations seem to profit from tautological claims as well, where scientific reputation cloaks ideological usage. This book discusses central tenets of Darwinism historically as well as systematically, for example the history of different Darwinian paradigms, the units-of-selection debate, and the philosophical problem of induction as basis of metaphysical Darwinism. Crucially the book addresses the Darwinian claim that evolution is governed by an immutable and unrelentingly cruel law of natural selection. Paradoxically, Darwins theory is a static, non-evolutionary theory of evolution. The current book sketches the historical background and provides suggestions that may help to replace this approach by the idea of an evolution of evolutionary mechanisms (see Escher's 'Drawing Hands' on the cover). This view even suggests a tendency to overcome the blindness of the knowledge acquisition of primordial Darwinian processes and allows for some freedom from external environments. This book first develops a radically Darwinian approach, then criticises this approach from within. Even Darwinism has a tendency to transcend itself. Although the book addresses several empirical issues, it does not challenge particular findings. Instead it builds on many insights of Darwinism and provides a proposal for interpreting known empirical evidence in a different light. It should help pave the way for further developing an understanding of nature that transcends Darwinian metaphysics"--Publisher's description.
Posted in Biology (General)

Matter and Form in Early Modern Science and Philosophy

Author: Gideon Manning

Publisher: BRILL

ISBN: 900421870X

Category: Philosophy

Page: 250

View: 8447

Bringing together an international team of historians of science and philosophy to discuss the fate of matter and form, this volume shows how disputes about matter and form spurred innovation as well as conservatism in early modern science and philosophy.
Posted in Philosophy


Author: John Cottingham

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA


Category: Philosophy

Page: 326

View: 2035

This latest volume in the Oxford Readings in Philosophy series brings together some of the most influential and stimulating essays on Descartes' philosophy to have appeared in the last fifty years, edited by the renowned Descartes specialist Professor John Cottingham. A lucid introduction by the editor outlines the principle features of Descartes' philosophy and summarises the main arguments of each chapter. Covering the full range of Descartes' thought, the volume opens with a clusterof central issues in Descartes' metaphysics: systematic doubt, the Cogito, clarity and distinctness, and the Cartesian Circle; followed by chapters on Descartes' theory of the will, and his account of necessity and possibility. Two notorious and interrelated problems in Descartes' system are then dealt with: the distinction between mind and body, and the unity of the human being. There follow chapters on Descartes' account of human nature and the passions, and his treatment of animals; andthe volume closes with three chapters on Cartesian science, covering Descartes' views on the relationship between experiment and deduction, his account of scientific explanation, and the notion of causal agency or force in his physics. These broad-ranging and accessible perspectives on Descartes' work will be essential reading for students and specialists.
Posted in Philosophy

Mechanism, Mentalism and Metamathematics

An Essay on Finitism

Author: J. Webb

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 940157653X

Category: Philosophy

Page: 285

View: 333

This book grew out of a graduate student paper [261] in which I set down some criticisms of J. R. Lucas' attempt to refute mechanism by means of G6del's theorem. I had made several such abortive attempts myself and had become familiar with their pitfalls, and especially with the double edged nature of incompleteness arguments. My original idea was to model the refutation of mechanism on the almost universally accepted G6delian refutation of Hilbert's formalism, but I kept getting stuck on questions of mathematical philosophy which I found myself having to beg. A thorough study of the foundational works of Hilbert and Bernays finally convinced me that I had all too naively and uncritically bought this refutation of formalism. I did indeed discover points of surprisingly close contact between formalism and mechanism, but also that it was possible to under mine certain strong arguments against these positions precisely by invok ing G6del's and related work. I also began to realize that the Church Turing thesis itself is the principal bastion protecting mechanism, and that G6del's work was perhaps the best thing that ever happened to both mechanism and formalism. I pushed these lines of argument in my dis sertation with the patient help of my readers, Raymond Nelson and Howard Stein. I would especially like to thank the latter for many valuable criticisms of my dissertation as well as some helpful suggestions for reor ganizing it in the direction of the present book.
Posted in Philosophy

Abhandlung über das licht

Worin die ursachen der vorgänge bei seiner zurückwerfung und brechung und besonders bei der eigenthümlichen brechung des isländischen spathes dargelegt sind

Author: Christiaan Huygens

Publisher: N.A


Category: Light, Wave theory of

Page: 115

View: 9221

Posted in Light, Wave theory of

Der Mensch eine Maschine

Author: Julien Offray de La Mettrie


ISBN: 3961183058

Category: Philosophy

Page: 167

View: 1195

Den Gedanken, Menschen in seiner Funktionsweise als Maschine zu begreifen, verfolgte nicht nur Julien Offray de La Mettrie, er aber tat dies mit einer besonderen Vehemenz. Diese Eindringlichkeit in der Sache ist bestimmt auch dem Umstand geschuldet, dass er nicht nur Philosoph, sondern auch Arzt war, der den Körper als ganzes betrachtete und so wusste, dass im menschlichen Körper Alles mit Allem im Zusammenhang steht.
Posted in Philosophy

The Modern Schoolman

Author: N.A

Publisher: N.A


Category: Philosophy

Page: N.A

View: 4214

Posted in Philosophy

Descartes' System of Natural Philosophy

Author: Stephen Gaukroger,Senior Lecturer in Philosophy Stephen Gaukroger

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521005258

Category: Philosophy

Page: 258

View: 8878

Towards the end of his life, Descartes published the first four parts of a projected six-part work, The Principles of Philosophy. This was intended to be the definitive statement of his complete system of philosophy, dealing with everything from cosmology to the nature of human happiness. Stephen Gaukroger examines the whole system, and reconstructs the last two parts, 'On Living Things' and 'On Man', from Descartes' other writings. He relates the work to the tradition of late Scholastic textbooks which it follows, and also to Descartes' other philosophical writings.
Posted in Philosophy

Descartes's Dualism

Author: Marleen ROZEMOND,Marleen Rozemond

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 0674042921

Category: Philosophy

Page: 304

View: 748

Posted in Philosophy

The Decline of Mechanism

(in Modern Physics)

Author: A. D'Abro

Publisher: N.A


Category: Mathematical physics

Page: 932

View: 8243

Posted in Mathematical physics