Leibniz and Prime Matter

Journal of the History of Philosophy 53 (3):435-460 (2015)
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I argue that the prime matter that Leibniz posits in every created monad is understood by him to be a mere defect or negation, and not something real and positive. Further, I argue that Leibniz’s talk of prime matter in every created monad is inspired by the thirteenth-century doctrine of spiritual matter, but that such talk is simply one way in which Leibniz frames a point that he frequently makes elsewhere—namely, that each creaturely essence incorporates a limitation that is the ultimate source of an original imperfection that affects the creature from the first moment of its existence.



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Shane Duarte
University of Notre Dame

Citations of this work

Du Châtelet on Freedom, Self-Motion, and Moral Necessity.Julia Jorati - 2019 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 57 (2):255-280.
Leibniz's Ontology of Force.Julia Jorati - 2018 - Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy 8:189–224.

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