Cartesian Views: Papers Presented to Richard A. Watson [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Journal of the History of Philosophy 46 (2):320-321 (2008)
Cartesian Views is a fitting tribute to a man of many parts, to use Alison Wylie’s apt description . Richard A. Watson has provoked, evoked, and invoked new directions in Cartesian scholarship—both methodologically and substantively. Watson’s Downfall of Cartesianism and its sequel, The Breakdown of Metaphysics , have become required reading for students of early modern philosophy and are largely responsible for the revival of many “minor” Cartesians, while serving as sourcebook for methodological attention to history and rational reconstruction. Cartesian Views is an important collection that hearkens a forty-year retrospective of Cartesian studies while simultaneously turning our sights to what lies in the future.Although an eclectic collection, each paper in the volume reflects some counterpoint to, advancement of, or commentary upon some aspect, claim, argument, or theme found in Watson’s philosophical works. The opening paper by Nadler questions Watson’s view that dualism and the problem of mind-body interaction was the central issue that stimulated.
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