Ch 3: Leibniz

Leibniz’s mechanics was, as we shall see, a theory of elastic collisions, not formulated like Huygens’ in terms of rules explicitly covering every possible combination of relative masses and velocities, but in terms of three conservation principles, including (effectively) the conservation of momentum and kinetic energy. That is, he proposed what we now call (ironically enough) ‘Newtonian’ (or ‘classical’) elastic collision theory. While such a theory is, for instance, vital to the foundations of the kinetic theory of gases, it is not applicable to systems – like gravitational systems – in which fields of force are present. Thus, Leibniz’s mechanical principles never led to developments of the order of Newton’s in the Principia (additionally, he hamstrung their application by embedding them in a baroque philosophical system). All the same, I wish to demonstrate, against the tendency of many modern readers, that Leibniz’s responses to the Newtonians must be understood in the context of his theory of motion, not in terms of Newtonian mechanics. As we shall see, his problems lie primarily in his own physics, not in misunderstanding Newton’s.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 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: 27,157
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

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Leibniz on Hobbes's Materialism.Stewart Duncan - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 41 (1):11-18.
The Principle of Continuity and Leibniz's Theory of Consciousness.Larry M. Jorgensen - 2009 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 47 (2):pp. 223-248.
Space and Relativity in Newton and Leibniz.Richard Arthur - 1994 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 45 (1):219-240.
Leibniz.Harry G. Frankfurt - 1972 - Garden City, N.Y., Anchor Books.
Leibniz: A Collection of Critical Essays.Harry G. Frankfurt - 1972 - University of Notre Dame Press.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

32 ( #159,438 of 2,163,646 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #348,043 of 2,163,646 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums