The role of matter theory in Baconian and cartesian cosmologies

Perspectives on Science 8 (3):201-222 (2000)
Abstract
Within twenty years of one another, Bacon and Descartes proposed cosmologies which relied heavily on matter theory. In both, the distribution of matter in the cosmos determined what centers of rotation there were, and rotating bodies were carried around by the motion of an all-encompassing celestial fluid in which they were embedded. But the role of matter theory in the two accounts is very different, both in motivation and in the level at which it is active in guiding physical theory. Matter theory in Baconian cosmology stands as a foundational discipline, being virtually constitutive of physical theory, as it had been for natural philosophers from Thales onwards, whereas in Descartes it is subservient to the needs of his optics and his mechanics. Comparison of the two cases shows how the role of matter theory came to be radically modified in seventeenth-century cosmology.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1162/106361400750340479
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 28,756
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Descartes' Debt to Beeckman: Inspiration, Cooperation, Conflict.Klass van Berkel - 2000 - In John Schuster, Stephen Gaukroger & John Sutton (eds.), Descartes' Natural Philosophy. Routledge.
Atomism and 'Subtlety' in Francis Bacon's Philosophy.Graham Rees - 1980 - Annals of Science 37 (5):549-571.

View all 6 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
The Hydrostatic Paradox and the Origins of Cartesian Dynamics.S. Gaukroger & J. Schuster - 2002 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 33 (3):535-572.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

14 ( #336,698 of 2,177,988 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #317,698 of 2,177,988 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums