Rationalist theories of sense perception and mind-body relation

In Alan Nelson (ed.), A Companion to Rationalism (Blackwell Companions to Philosophy). Blackwell 31-60 (2005)
This chapter compares rationalist theories of sense perception to previously held theories of perception (especially of vision) and examines rationalist accounts of sensory qualities and sensory representation, of the role of the sense-based passions in guiding behavior, of the epistemological benefits and dangers of sense perception, and of mind–body relations. Each section begins with Descartes, the first major rationalist of the seventeenth century. The other major rationalists, Malebranche, Spinoza, and Leibniz, and also lesser known figures such as Pierre Regis, Jacques Rohault, and Antoine Le Grand, were well acquainted with Descartes' work. Indeed, the first three were each deeply influenced by Descartes in their early years before developing their own philosophical systems, and the latter three were all advocates of Descartes' philosophy (perhaps with slight revision). Each of the major rationalists, while sharing some positions in common, developed a distinctive metaphysics of perception and of the mind–body relation. Earlier sections chart these differences and a final section sums up common features and touches on the continuing significance of their views.
Keywords Mind-body  Perception  Rationalism  Passions and emotions  Rene Descartes  Benedict Spinoza  Nicolas Malebranch  Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz  Antoine Le Grand  Pierre Sylvain Régis
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Gary Hatfield (2007). The Passions of the Soul and Descartes's Machine Psychology. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 38 (1):1-35.

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