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  1. Thinking Nature, "Pierre Maupertuis and the Charge of Error Against Fermat and Leibniz".Richard Samuel Lamborn - unknown
    The purpose of this dissertation is to defend Pierre Fermat and Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz against the charge of error made against them by Pierre Maupertuis that they errantly applied final causes to physics. This charge came in Maupertuis’ 1744 speech to the Paris Academy of Sciences, later published in different versions, entitled Accord Between Different Laws Which at First Seemed Incompatible. It is in this speech that Maupertuis lays claim to one of the most important discoveries in the history of (...)
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  • Leibniz on Causation – Part 1.Julia Jorati - 2015 - Philosophy Compass 10 (6):389-397.
    Leibniz holds that created substances do not causally interact with each other but that there is causal activity within each such creature. Every created substance constantly changes internally, and each of these changes is caused by the substance itself or by its prior states. Leibniz describes this kind of intra-substance causation both in terms of final causation and in terms of efficient causation. How exactly this works, however, is highly controversial. I will identify what I take to be the major (...)
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  • Leibniz on Causation – Part 2.Julia Jorati - 2015 - Philosophy Compass 10 (6):398-405.
    Leibniz is almost unique among early modern philosophers in giving final causation a central place in his metaphysical system. All changes in created substances, according to Leibniz, have final causes, that is, occur for the sake of some end. There is, however, no consensus among commentators about the details of Leibniz's views on final causation. The least perfect types of changes that created substances undergo are especially puzzling because those changes seem radically different from paradigmatic instances of final causation. Building (...)
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  • A Third Version of Constructivism: Rethinking Spinoza’s Metaethics.Peter D. Zuk - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (10):2565-2574.
    In this essay, I claim that certain passages in Book IV of Benedict de Spinoza’s Ethics suggest a novel version of what is known as metaethical constructivism. The constructivist interpretation emerges in the course of attempting to resolve a tension between Spinoza’s apparent ethical egoism and some remarks he makes about the efficacy of collaborating with the right partners when attempting to promote our individual self-interest . Though Spinoza maintains that individuals necessarily aim to promote their self-interest, I argue that (...)
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