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  1. Margaret Cavendish, Environmental Ethics, and Panpsychism.Stewart Duncan - manuscript
    Margaret Cavendish (1623-73) held a number of surprising philosophical views. These included a materialist panpsychism, and some views in what we might call environmental ethics. Panpsychism, though certainly not unheard of, is still often a surprising view. Views in environmental ethics - even just views that involve a measure of environmental concern - are unusual to find in early modern European philosophy. Cavendish held both of these surprising views. One might suspect that panpsychism provides some reasons for environmental concern. I (...)
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  2. Cavendish and Berkeley on Inconceivability and Impossibility [DRAFT - Please Do Not Cite].Peter West - manuscript
    In this paper, I compare Margaret Cavendish’s argument for the view that colours of objects are inseparable from their ‘physical’ qualities with George Berkeley’s argument for the view that secondary qualities of objects are inseparable from their primary qualities. By reconstructing their respective arguments, I show that both thinkers rely on the ‘inconceivability principle’: the claim that inconceivability entails impossibility. That is, both premise their arguments on the claim that it is impossible to conceive of an object that has size (...)
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  3. Women, Liberty, and Forms of Feminism.Karen Detlefsen - forthcoming - In Jacqueline Broad & Karen Detlefsen (eds.), Women and Liberty, 1600-1800: Philosophical Essays. Oxford University Press.
    This chapter shows how Mary Astell and Margaret Cavendish can reasonably be understood as early feminists in three senses of the term. First, they are committed to the natural equality of men and women, and related, they are committed to equal opportunity of education for men and women. Second, they are committed to social structures that help women develop authentic selves and thus autonomy understood in one sense of the word. Third, they acknowledge the power of production relationships, especially friendships (...)
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  4. Advanced College Writing Dr. Rogers 8 November 2008 Ethos and Authorship in “The Ghastly Ordeal of Timothy Cavendish”.Michael Madson - forthcoming - Ethos: Journal of the Society for Psychological Anthropology.
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  5. Self-Knowledge, Perception, and Margaret Cavendish’s Metaphysics of the Individual.Laura Georgescu - 2021 - Early Science and Medicine 25 (6):618-639.
    For Margaret Cavendish, every single part of matter has self-knowledge, and almost every part has perceptive knowledge. This paper asks what is at stake for Cavendish in ascribing self-knowing and perceptive properties to matter. Whereas many commentators take perception and self-knowledge to be guides to Cavendish’s epistemology, this paper takes them to be guides to her metaphysics, in that it shows that these categories account for individual specificity and for relationality. A part of matter is a unique individual insofar as (...)
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  6. Experiment, Speculation, and Religion in Early Modern Philosophy Ed. By Alberto Vanzo and Peter R. Anstey.Marcus P. Adams - 2020 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 58 (4):817-818.
    This edited volume will be of interest to specialists in the history of early modern philosophy and in the history and philosophy of science. It contains ten chapters related to the themes of experimental philosophy, speculative philosophy, and the relationships of both to religion. Most of the book considers these themes in the thought of six early modern philosophers, with a chapter for each of the following: Bacon, Boyle, Cavendish, Hobbes, Locke, and Newton. The remaining chapters focus upon these themes (...)
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  7. Cavendish and Boyle on Colour and Experimental Philosophy.Keith Allen - 2019 - In Alberto Vanzo & Peter R. Anstey (eds.), Experiment, Speculation and Religion in Early Modern Philosophy. New York: Routledge.
    Margaret Cavendish was a contemporary critic of the mechanistic theories of matter that came to dominate seventeenth-century thought and the proponent of a distinctive form of non-mechanistic materialism. Colour was a central issue both to the mechanistic theories of matter that Cavendish opposed and to the non-mechanistic alternative that she defended. This chapter considers the form of colour realism that Cavendish developed to complement her non-mechanistic materialism, and uses her criticisms of contemporary views of colour to try to better understand (...)
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  8. Review of the Well-Ordered Universe. [REVIEW]Colin Chamberlain - 2019 - Hypatia Reviews Online.
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  9. The Well-Ordered Universe: The Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish by Deborah A. Boyle. [REVIEW]Stewart Duncan - 2019 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 57 (2):349-350.
    Deborah Boyle's book is a splendid addition to the literature on the philosophy of Margaret Cavendish. It provides an overview of Cavendish's philosophical work, from her panpsychist materialism, through her views about human motivation and general political philosophy, to views about gender, health, and humans' relation to the rest of the natural world. Boyle emphasizes themes of order and regularity, but does not argue that there is a strong systematic connection between Cavendish's views. Indeed, she makes a point of noting (...)
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  10. Experiment, Speculation and Religion in Early Modern Philosophy.Alberto Vanzo & Peter R. Anstey (eds.) - 2019 - New York: Routledge.
    Experimental philosophy was an exciting and extraordinarily successful development in the study of nature in the seventeenth century. Yet experimental philosophy was not without its critics and was far from the only natural philosophical method on the scene. In particular, experimental philosophy was contrasted with and set against speculative philosophy and, in some quarters, was accused of tending to irreligion. This volume brings together ten scholars of early modern philosophy, history and science in order to shed new light on the (...)
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  11. Review of Margaret Cavendish, Observations Upon Experimental Philosophy, Edited by Eugene Marshall. [REVIEW]Stewart Duncan - 2018 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 26 (3):617-9.
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  12. Margaret Cavendish on the Order and Infinitude of Nature.Michael Bennett McNulty - 2018 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 35 (3):219-239.
    In this paper, I develop a new interpretation of the order of nature, its function, and its implications in Margaret Cavendish’s philosophy. According to the infinite balance account, the order of nature consists in a balance among the infinite varieties of nature. That is, for Cavendish, nature contains an infinity of different types of matter: infinite species, shapes, and motions. The potential tumult implicated by such a variety, however, is tempered by the counterbalancing of the different kinds and motions of (...)
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  13. Visual Perception as Patterning: Cavendish Against Hobbes on Sensation.Marcus P. Adams - 2016 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 33 (3):193-214.
    Many of Margaret Cavendish’s criticisms of Thomas Hobbes in the Philosophical Letters (1664) relate to the disorder and damage that she holds would result if Hobbesian pressure were the cause of visual perception. In this paper, I argue that her “two men” thought experiment in Letter IV is aimed at a different goal: to show the explanatory potency of her account. First, I connect Cavendish’s view of visual perception as “patterning” to the “two men” thought experiment in Letter IV. Second, (...)
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  14. Cavendish.David Cunning - 2016 - Routledge.
    Margaret Cavendish was a philosopher, poet, scientist, novelist, and playwright of the seventeenth century. Her work is important for a number of reasons. It presents an early and compelling version of the naturalism that is found in current-day philosophy; it offers important insights that bear on recent discussions of the nature and characteristics of intelligence and the question of whether or not the bodies that surround us are intelligent or have an intelligent cause; it anticipates some of the central views (...)
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  15. Brandie R. Siegfried; Lisa T. Sarasohn . God and Nature in the Thought of Margaret Cavendish. Xvi + 257 Pp., Illus., App., Bibl., Index. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate, 2014. £65. [REVIEW]Sarah Hutton - 2016 - Isis 107 (1):168-170.
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  16. Observations Upon Experimental Philosophy, Abridged: With Related Texts.Eugene Marshall (ed.) - 2016 - Hackett Publishing Company.
    "Margaret Cavendish's philosophical work is at last taking its rightful place in the history of seventeenth-century thought, but her writings are so voluminous and wide-ranging that introducing her work to students has been difficult—at least until this volume came along. This carefully edited abridgment of _Observations upon Experimental Philosophy_ will be indispensable for making Cavendish's fascinating ideas accessible to students. Marshall's Introduction provides a helpful overview of themes in Cavendish's natural philosophy, and the footnotes contain useful background information about some (...)
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  17. ‘Exploding’ Immaterial Substances: Margaret Cavendish’s Vitalist-Materialist Critique of Spirits.Emma Wilkins - 2016 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 24 (5):858-877.
    ABSTRACTIn this paper, I explore Margaret Cavendish’s engagement with mid-seventeenth-century debates on spirits and spiritual activity in the world, especially the problems of incorporeal substance and magnetism. I argue that between 1664 and 1668, Cavendish developed an increasingly robust form of materialism in response to the deficiencies which she identified in alternative philosophical systems – principally mechanical philosophy and vitalism. This was an intriguing direction of travel, given the intensification in attacks on the supposedly atheistic materialism of Hobbes. While some (...)
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  18. Margaret Cavendish on Perception, Self‐Knowledge, and Probable Opinion.Deborah Boyle - 2015 - Philosophy Compass 10 (7):438-450.
    Scholarly interest in Margaret Cavendish's philosophical views has steadily increased over the past decade, but her epistemology has received little attention, and no consensus has emerged; Cavendish has been characterized as a skeptic, as a rationalist, as presenting an alternative epistemology to both rationalism and empiricism, and even as presenting no clear theory of knowledge at all. This paper concludes that Cavendish was only a modest skeptic, for she believed that humans can achieve knowledge through sensitive and rational perception as (...)
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  19. ‘Two Opposite Things Placed Near Each Other, Are the Better Discerned’: Philosophical Readings of Cavendish's Literary Output.Carlos Santana - 2015 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 23 (2):297-317.
    Seventeenth-century philosopher Margaret Cavendish wrote not only several philosophical treatises, but also many fictional works. I argue for taking the latter as serious objects of study for historians of philosophy, and sketch a method for doing so. Cavendish's fiction is full of conflicting viewpoints, and many authors have argued that this demonstrates that she did not intend her literary works to serve serious philosophical purpose. But if we consider philosophers more central to the canon, such as Plato or Kierkegaard, who (...)
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  20. Cavendish, Margaret.Eugene Marshall - 2014 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Margaret Cavendish Margaret Lucas Cavendish, the Duchess of Newcastle, was a philosopher, poet, playwright and essayist. Her philosophical writings were concerned mostly with issues of metaphysics and natural philosophy, but also extended to social and political concerns. Like Hobbes and Descartes, she rejected what she took to be the occult explanations of the Scholastics. […].
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  21. Margaret Cavendish: Gender, Science and Politics.Lisa Walters - 2014 - Cambridge University Press.
    It is often thought that the numerous contradictory perspectives in Margaret Cavendish's writings demonstrate her inability to reconcile her feminism with her conservative, royalist politics. In this book Lisa Walters challenges this view and demonstrates that Cavendish's ideas more closely resemble republican thought, and that her methodology is the foundation for subversive political, scientific and gender theories. With an interdisciplinary focus Walters closely examines Cavendish's work and its context, providing the reader with an enriched understanding of women's contribution to early (...)
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  22. Margaret Cavendish.Deborah Boyle - 2013 - The Philosophers' Magazine 60 (-1):63-65.
  23. Margaret Cavendish on Gender, Nature, and Freedom.Deborah Boyle - 2013 - Hypatia 28 (3):516-532.
    Some scholars have argued that Margaret Cavendish was ambivalent about women's roles and capabilities, for she seems sometimes to hold that women are naturally inferior to men, but sometimes that this inferiority is due to inferior education. I argue that attention to Cavendish's natural philosophy can illuminate her views on gender. In section II I consider the implications of Cavendish's natural philosophy for her views on male and female nature, arguing that Cavendish thought that such natures were not fixed. However, (...)
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  24. Pedagogy and Passages: The Performativity of Margaret Cavendish's Utopian Fiction.Zelia Gregoriou - 2013 - Journal of Philosophy of Education 47 (3):457-474.
    This article explores the pedagogical significance of non-static and hybrid utopian readings and writings by focusing on Margaret Cavendish's educationally-philosophically neglected female utopia The Description of a New World, Called the Blazing World. It questions the exaggerated, inflated and exclusivist emphasis on the pedagogical benefits of homologous spatial signifiers of entry into utopia and return to home and draws examples of utopian passages across genres, texts, minds and worlds from the writing of Cavendish. Such passages can be read as performative (...)
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  25. Margaret Cavendish, Stoic Antecedent Causes, And Early Modern Occasional Causes.Eileen O'Neill - 2013 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 138 (3):311-326.
    Margaret Cavendish was an English natural philosopher. Influenced by Hobbes and by ancient Stoicism, she held that the created, natural world is purely material; there are no incorporeal substances that causally affect the world in the course of nature. However, she parts company with Hobbes and sides with the Stoics in rejecting a participate theory of matter. Instead, she holds that matter is a continuum. She rejects the mechanical philosophy's account of the essence of matter as simply extension. For Cavendish, (...)
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  26. Margaret Cavendish and Thomas Hobbes on Freedom, Education, and Women.Karen Detlefsen - 2012 - In Nancy J. Hirschmann & Joanne H. Wright (eds.), Feminist Interpretations of Thomas Hobbes. The Pennsylvania State University Press. pp. 149-168.
    In this paper, I argue that Margaret Cavendish’s account of freedom, and the role of education in freedom, is better able to account for the specifics of women’s lives than are Thomas Hobbes’ accounts of these topics. The differences between the two is grounded in their differing conceptions of the metaphysics of human nature, though the full richness of Cavendish’s approach to women, their minds and their freedom can be appreciated only if we take account of her plays, accepting them (...)
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  27. Debating Materialism: Cavendish, Hobbes, and More.Stewart Duncan - 2012 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 29 (4):391-409.
    This paper discusses the materialist views of Margaret Cavendish, focusing on the relationships between her views and those of two of her contemporaries, Thomas Hobbes and Henry More. It argues for two main claims. First, Cavendish's views sit, often rather neatly, between those of Hobbes and More. She agreed with Hobbes on some issues and More on others, while carving out a distinctive alternative view. Secondly, the exchange between Hobbes, More, and Cavendish illustrates a more general puzzle about just what (...)
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  28. Margaret Cavendish's Early Engagement with Descartes and Hobbes: Philosophical Revisitation and Poetic Selection.L. E. Semler - 2012 - Intellectual History Review 22 (3):327-353.
  29. The Natural Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish: Reason and Fancy During the Scientific Revolution. [REVIEW]Deborah Boyle - 2011 - Isis 102:360-361.
  30. Is Margaret Cavendish Worthy of Study Today?Jacqueline Broad - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 42 (3):457-461.
    Before her death in 1673, Margaret Cavendish, the Duchess of Newcastle, expressed a wish that her philosophical work would experience a ‘glorious resurrection’ in future ages. During her lifetime, and for almost three centuries afterwards, her writings were destined to ‘lye still in the soft and easie Bed of Oblivion’. But more recently, Cavendish has received a measure of the fame she so desired. She is celebrated by feminists, literary theorists, and historians. There are regular conferences organised by the International (...)
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  31. Cavendish, van Helmont, and the Mad Raging Womb.Jacqueline Broad - 2011 - In Judy A. Hayden (ed.), The New Science and Women’s Literary Discourse: Prefiguring Frankenstein. Palgrave-Macmillan. pp. 47-63.
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  32. Lisa T. Sarasohn. The Natural Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish: Reason and Fancy During the Scientific Revolution. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2010. Pp. Xi+251. $75.00. [REVIEW]Benjamin Goldberg - 2011 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 1 (1):169-172.
  33. The Natural Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish: Reason and Fancy During the Scientific Revolution. [REVIEW]John Henry - 2011 - Early Science and Medicine 16 (2):173-175.
  34. Margaret Lucas Cavendish.David Cunning - 2010 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  35. The Natural Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish.Lisa Sarasohn - 2010 - The Johns Hopkins University Pres.
    Lisa T. Sarasohn acutely examines the brilliant work of this untrained mind and explores the unorthodox development of her natural philosophy.
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  36. Margaret Cavendish on the Relation Between God and World.Karen Detlefsen - 2009 - Philosophy Compass 4 (3):421-438.
    It has often been noted that Margaret Cavendish discusses God in her writings on natural philosophy far more than one might think she ought to given her explicit claim that a study of God belongs to theology which is to be kept strictly separate from studies in natural philosophy. In this article, I examine one way in which God enters substantially into her natural philosophy, namely the role he plays in her particular version of teleology. I conclude that, while Cavendish (...)
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  37. Margaret Cavendish's Epistemology.Kourken Michaelian1 - 2009 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 17 (1):31 – 53.
    This paper provides a systematic reconstruction of Cavendish's general epistemology and a characterization of the fundamental role of that theory in her natural philosophy. After reviewing the outlines of her natural philosophy, I describe her treatment of 'exterior knowledge', i.e. of perception in general and of sense perception in particular. I then describe her treatment of 'interior knowledge', i.e. of self-knowledge and 'conception'. I conclude by drawing out some implications of this reconstruction for our developing understanding of Cavendish's natural philosophy.
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  38. Margaret Cavendish and Joseph Glanvill: Science, Religion, and Witchcraft.Jacqueline Broad - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 38 (3):493-505.
    Many scholars point to the close association between early modern science and the rise of rational arguments in favour of the existence of witches. For some commentators, it is a poor reflection on science that its methods so easily lent themselves to the unjust persecution of innocent men and women. In this paper, I examine a debate about witches between a woman philosopher, Margaret Cavendish , and a fellow of the Royal Society, Joseph Glanvill . I argue that Cavendish is (...)
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  39. Reason and Freedom: Margaret Cavendish on the Order and Disorder of Nature.Karen Detlefsen - 2007 - Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie 89 (2):157-191.
    According to Margaret Cavendish the entire natural world is essentially rational such that everything thinks in some way or another. In this paper, I examine why Cavendish would believe that the natural world is ubiquitously rational, arguing against the usual account, which holds that she does so in order to account for the orderly production of very complex phenomena (e.g. living beings) given the limits of the mechanical philosophy. Rather, I argue, she attributes ubiquitous rationality to the natural world in (...)
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  40. The Domestication of Royalist Themes in The Concealed Fancies by Jane Cavendish and Elizabeth Brackley.Kamille Stanton - 2007 - Clio: A Journal of Literature, History, and the Philosophy of History 36 (2):177-198.
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  41. Two Opponents of Material Atomism.Catherine Wilson - 2007 - In P. Phemister & S. Brown (eds.), Leibniz and the English-Speaking World. Springer. pp. 35--50.
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  42. Fame, Virtue, and Government: Margaret Cavendish on Ethics and Politics.Deborah Boyle - 2006 - Journal of the History of Ideas 67 (2):251-289.
  43. Atomism, Monism, and Causation in the Natural Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish.Karen Detlefsen - 2006 - Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy 3:199-240.
    Between 1653 and 1655 Margaret Cavendish makes a radical transition in her theory of matter, rejecting her earlier atomism in favour of an infinitely-extended and infinitely-divisible material plenum, with matter being ubiquitously self-moving, sensing, and rational. It is unclear, however, if Cavendish can actually dispense of atomism. One of her arguments against atomism, for example, depends upon the created world being harmonious and orderly, a premise Cavendish herself repeatedly undermines by noting nature’s many disorders. I argue that her supposed difficulties (...)
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  44. Medicating" Margaret".Coleen Reid - 2006 - Journal of Clinical Ethics 17 (4):340.
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  45. A Princely Brave Woman: Essays On Margaret Cavendish, Duchess Of Newcastle; Authorial Conquests: Essays On Genre In The Writing Of Margaret Cavendish; Margaret Cavendish: Political Writings. [REVIEW]Hilda Smith - 2006 - Clio: A Journal of Literature, History, and the Philosophy of History 36 (1):122-129.
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  46. Cavendish Redefined.Jacqueline Broad - 2004 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 12 (4):731 – 741.
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  47. A Princely Brave Woman: Essays on Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle.Stephen Clucas (ed.) - 2003 - Ashgate.
    This collection of essays presents a variety of new approaches to the oeuvre of Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, one of the most influential and controversial women writers of the seventeenth century.
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  48. Margaret Cavendish and Henry More.Sarah Hutton - 2003 - In Stephen Clucas (ed.), A Princely Brave Woman: Essays on Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle. Ashgate.
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  49. Margaret Cavendish: Political Writings.Susan James (ed.) - 2003 - Cambridge University Press.
    Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, published a wide variety of works including poems, plays, letters and treatises of natural philosophy, but her significance as a political writer has only recently been recognised. This major contribution to the series of Cambridge Texts includes the first ever modern edition of her Divers Orations on English social and political life, together with a new student-friendly rendition of her imaginary voyage, A New World called the Blazing World. Susan James explains the allusions made in (...)
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  50. Speculative Truth: Henry Cavendish, Natural Philosophy and the Rise of Modern Theoretical Science.Russell McCormmach - 2003 - Oxford University Press USA.
    With a never-before published paper by Lord Henry Cavendish, as well as a biography on him, this book offers a fascinating discourse on the rise of scientific attitudes and ways of knowing. A pioneering British physicist in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, Cavendish was widely considered to be the first full-time scientist in the modern sense. Through the lens of this unique thinker and writer, this book is about the birth of modern science.
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