In the mid-seventeenth century a movement of self-styled experimental philosophers emerged in Britain. Originating in the discipline of natural philosophy amongst Fellows of the fledgling Royal Society of London, it soon spread to medicine and by the eighteenth century had impacted moral and political philosophy and even aesthetics. Earlymodernexperimental philosophers gave epistemic priority to observation and experiment over theorising and speculation. They decried the use of hypotheses and system-building without recourse to experiment (...) and, in some quarters, developed a philosophy of experiment. The movement spread to the Netherlands and France in the early eighteenth century and later impacted Germany. Its important role in earlymodernphilosophy was subsequently eclipsed by the widespread adoption of the Kantian historiography of modernphilosophy, which emphasised the distinction between rationalism and empiricism and had no place for the historical phenomenon of earlymodernexperimentalphilosophy. The re-emergence of interest in earlymodernexperimentalphilosophy roughly coincided with the development of contemporary x-phi and there are some important similarities between the two. (shrink)
This paper argues that earlymodernexperimentalphilosophy emerged as the dominant member of a pair of methods in natural philosophy, the speculative versus the experimental, and that this pairing derives from an overarching distinction between speculative and operative philosophy that can be ultimately traced back to Aristotle. The paper examines the traditional classification of natural philosophy as a speculative discipline from the Stagirite to the seventeenth century; medieval and early (...) class='Hi'>modern attempts to articulate a scientia experimentalis; and the tensions in the classification of natural magic and mechanics that led to the introduction of an operative part of natural philosophy in the writings of Francis Bacon and John Johnston. The paper concludes with a summary of the salient discontinuities between the experimental/speculative distinction of the mid-seventeenth century and its predecessors and a statement of the developments that led to the ascendance of experimentalphilosophy from the 1660s. (shrink)
What causes winds was regarded as one of the most difficult questions of earlymodern natural philosophy. Vitruvius, the ancient Roman architectural author, put forth an alternative to Aristotle’s theory by likening the generation of wind to the actions of the aeolipile, which he believed made artificial winds. As Vitruvius’s work proliferated during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, numerous natural philosophers, including Descartes, used the aeolipile as a model for nature. Yet, interpretations of Vitruvius’s text and of (...) the relation of the aeolipile to natural winds varied according to definitions and conceptions of air, wind, rarefaction, condensation, and vapor. (shrink)
This chapter discusses the relation between Christian Wolff's philosophy and the methodological views of earlymodernexperimental philosophers. The chapter argues for three claims. First, Wolff's system relies on experience at every step and his views on experiments, observations, hypotheses, and the a priori are in line with those of experimental philosophers. Second, the study of Wolff's views demonstrates the influence of experimentalphilosophy in early eighteenth-century Germany. Third, references to Wolff's empiricism (...) and rationalism are best identified or replaced with references to his endorsement of the tenets of experimental philosophers and of a mathematical demonstrative method. (shrink)
Several recent studies of earlymodern natural philosophy have claimed that corpuscularism and experimentalphilosophy were sharply distinct or even conflicting views. This chapter provides a different perspective on the relation between corpuscularism and experimentalphilosophy by examining Domenico Guglielmini’s ‘Philosophical Reflections’ on salts (1688). This treatise on crystallography develops a corpuscularist theory and defends it in a way that is in line with the methodological prescriptions, epistemological strictures, and preferred argumentative styles of (...)experimental philosophers. The examination of the ‘Reflections’ shows that earlymodern philosophers could consistently endorse, at the same time, corpuscularism and experimentalphilosophy. (shrink)
The paper examines differences of styles of experimentation in the history of science. It presents arguments for a historization of our historial and philosophical notion of "experimentation," which question the common view that "experimentalphilosophy" was the only style of experimentation in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. It argues, in particular, that "experimental history" and technological inquiry were accepted styles of academic experimentation at the time. These arguments are corroborated by a careful analysis of a (...) case study, which is embedded in a comparative historical overview. (shrink)
Francis Bacon and the art of direction -- An art of tempering the mind -- The distempered mind and the tree of knowledge -- A comprehensive culture of the mind -- The end of knowledge -- The study of nature as regimen -- Cultura and medicina animi: an earlymodern tradition -- The physician of the soul -- Sources -- Genres -- Utility: practical versus speculative knowledge -- Self-love and the fallen/uncultured mind -- The office of reason -- (...) Passions, errors, and assent -- The discipline, the virtues, and habituation -- Virtuoso discipline -- The cure of the mind and Solomon's house -- Passions, errors, and method -- Idols and diseases of the mind -- Epistemic modesty -- The way of inquiry -- A 'union of eyes and hands': the community and objectivity revisited -- Robert Boyle: experience as paideia -- The limits and the 'perfection' of reason -- The weak mind and the virtues of a free inquiry -- Reason and experience -- The Christian philosopher -- John Locke and the education of the mind -- Limits of reason, useful knowledge, and the duty to search for truth -- A natural history of the distempered mind -- The regulation of assent: a perfecting exercise -- The discourse with a friend -- Studying nature -- Lived physics -- The appropriateness of disproportion -- Experience, history, and speculation -- Affective cognition -- Studying 'God's contrivances' -- The study of theology and the growth of the mind -- Worlds and angels -- Reading scripture -- Conclusion. (shrink)
This Oxford Handbook examines the radical transformation of worldview taking place in the period from the middle of the 16th century to the early 18th century. The intention of the volume is to cover both well-known and undeservedly less well-known philosophical texts by placing these works in their historical context which includes tight interconnections with other disciplines as well as historical and political events. By proceeding in this manner the editors hope to recover a meaning of “philosophy” that (...) comes closer to the way its earlymodern proponents would have understood and practiced it. The editors also point to the reader-friendly character of this Handbook: in addition to grouping chapters in five categories, cross-references to chapters or pages dealing with the same issues make it possible for readers to consult the book selectively. (shrink)
The view of language is greatly changed from earlymodernphilosophy to later modernphilosophy and to postmodern philosophy. The linguistic question in earlymodernphilosophy, which is characterized by rationalism and empiricism, is discussed in this paper. Linguistic phenomena are not at the center of philosophical reflections in earlymodernphilosophy. The subject of consciousness is at the center of the philosophy, which makes language serve purely (...) as an instrument for representing thoughts. Locke, Leibniz and Descartes consider language from a representationalist point of view. To them, language itself is idealized and represents thought as if it were thought representing itself. Like the structural linguist Saussure, the founders of phenomenology and analytical philosophy give much attention to the logical or static structure of language, and stick up for the representationalism of earlymodernphilosophy. However, their successors refuse to accept this attitude, meaning the final collapse of representationalism. (shrink)
It is a challenge in teaching earlymodernphilosophy to balance historical faithfulness to the arguments and concerns of earlymodern philosophers and interpreting them as relevant to the kinds of thinking that contemporary undergraduate students find plausible. Earlymodernphilosophy is unique, however, in applying modern scientific method directly to problems concerning nonphysical aspects of reality that our contemporary scientific thought, and with it mainstream contemporary culture, no longer find amenable (...) in their own, independent right to reliable reasoned approaches. At the same time, earlymodernphilosophy often also takes seriously purely conceptual or logically consequential thought in the investigation of these topics, as our mainstream contemporary culture does not. This kind of thought, we argue, is distinctive of philosophy in general and appropriate to nonphysical aspects of reality. Earlymodernphilosophy, then, offers a bridge between the kind of reasoned, objective thought our mainstream culture finds plausible and thought about nonphysical reality or, in general, the thought that characterizes philosophy. (shrink)
The articles in the symposium “Teaching EarlyModernPhilosophy: New Approaches” provide theoretical reflections and practical advice on new ways of teaching undergraduate survey courses in earlymodernphilosophy. This introduction lays out the rationale for the symposium and summarizes the articles that compose it.
We have been accustomed at least since Kant and mainstream history of philosophy to distinguish between the ‘mechanical’ and the ‘teleological’; between a fully mechanistic, quantitative science of Nature exemplified by Newton and a teleological, qualitative approach to living beings ultimately expressed in the concept of ‘organism’ – a purposive entity, or at least an entity possessed of functions. The beauty of this distinction is that it seems to make intuitive sense and to map onto historical and conceptual constellations (...) in medicine, physiology and the related natural -philosophical discussions on the status of the body versus that of the machine. In this presentation I argue that the distinction between mechanism and teleology is imprecise and flawed, on the basis of a series of examples: the presence of ‘functional’ or ‘purposive’ features even in Cartesian physiology; work such as that of Richard Lower’s on animal respiration; the fact that the model of the ‘body-machine’ is not at all a mechanistic reduction of organismic properties to basic physical properties but on the contrary a way of emphasizing the uniqueness of organic life; and the concept of ‘animal economy’ in vitalist medical theory, which I present as a kind of ‘teleo-mechanistic’ concept of organism – neither mechanical nor teleological. (shrink)
This paper reconstructs the natural philosophical method of Geminiano Montanari, one of the most prominent Italian natural philosophers of the late seventeenth century. Montanari’s views are used as a case study to assess recent claims concerning earlymodernexperimentalphilosophy. Having presented the distinctive tenets of seventeenth-century experimental philosophers, I argue that Montanari adheres to them explicitly, thoroughly, and consistently. The study of Montanari’s views supports three claims. First, experimentalphilosophy was not an (...) exclusively British phenomenon. Second, in spite of some portrayals of experimentalphilosophy as an ‘atheoretical’ or ‘purely descriptive’ enterprise, experimental philosophers could consistently endorse a variety of natural philosophical explanations and postulate theoretical entities. Third, experimentalphilosophy and mechanical philosophy were not, as such, antagonistic. They could be consistently combined in a single philosophical enterprise. (shrink)
Although the notion of empiricism looms large in many histories of earlymodernphilosophy, its origins are not well understood. This paper aims to shed light on them. It examines the notions of empirical philosopher, physician, and politician that are employed in a range of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century texts, alongside related notions (e.g. "experimentalphilosophy") and methodological stances. It concludes that the notion of empiricism used in many histories of earlymodern thought does (...) not have pre-Kantian origins. It first appeared and became widely used in late eighteenth-century Germany, in the course of the early debates on Kant's Critical philosophy. (shrink)
'The History of Western Philosophy of Religion' brings together an international team of over 100 leading scholars to provide authoritative exposition of how history's most important philosophical thinkers - from antiquity to the present day - have sought to analyse the concepts and tenets central to Western religious belief, especially Christianity. Divided chronologically into five volumes, 'The History of Western Philosophy of Religion' is designed to be accessible to a wide range of readers, from the scholar looking for (...) original insight and the latest research findings to the student wishing for a masterly encapsulation of a particular philosopher's views. Together these volumes provide an indispensable resource for anyone conducting research or teaching in the philosophy of religion and related fields, such as theology, religious studies, the history of philosophy, and the history of ideas. (shrink)
An international team of over 100 leading scholars has been brought together to provide authoritative exposition of how history's most important philosophical thinkers - fron antiquity to the present day - have sought to analyse the concepts and tenets central to Western religious belief, especially Christianity. Divided, chronologically, into five volumes, _The History of Western Philosophy of Religion_ is designed to be accessible to a wide range of readers, from the scholar looking for original insight and the latest research (...) findings to the student wishing for a masterly encapsulation of a particular philosopher's views. It will become the standard reference in the field. Features: each volume opens with a general introduction, presenting an overview of philosophy of religion in the period each essay opens with a brief biography, then outlines and analyses that philosopher's contribution to thinking on religion, and concludes with key further reading essays are cross-referenced, highlighting the development of major ideas and influences across history each volume closes with a chronology, presenting a contextual guide to the main religious, political, cultural and artistic events of the period each volume contains its own bibliography and index. (shrink)
Offered here is the first comprehensive treatment in English of the philosophical system of the seventeenth century philosopher Pierre Gassendi. Gassendi's importance is widely recognized and is essential for understanding earlymodern philosophers and scientists such as Locke, Leibniz and Newton. Offering a systematic overview of his contributions, LoLordo situates Gassendi's views within the context of sixteenth and early seventeenth century natural philosophy as represented by a variety of intellectual traditions, including scholastic Aristotelianism, Renaissance Neo-Platonism, and (...) the emerging mechanical philosophy. LoLordo's work will be essential reading for historians of earlymodernphilosophy and science. (shrink)
Peter Anstey presents a thorough and innovative study of John Locke's views on the method and content of natural philosophy. Focusing on Locke's Essay concerning Human Understanding, but also drawing extensively from his other writings and manuscript remains, Anstey argues that Locke was an advocate of the ExperimentalPhilosophy: the new approach to natural philosophy championed by Robert Boyle and the early Royal Society who were opposed to speculative philosophy. On the question of method, (...) Anstey shows how Locke's pessimism about the prospects for a demonstrative science of nature led him, in the Essay, to promote Francis Bacon's method of natural history, and to downplay the value of hypotheses and analogical reasoning in science. But, according to Anstey, Locke never abandoned the ideal of a demonstrative natural philosophy, for he believed that if we could discover the primary qualities of the tiny corpuscles that constitute material bodies, we could then establish a kind of corpuscular metric that would allow us a genuine science of nature. It was only after the publication of the Essay, however, that Locke came to realize that Newton's Principia provided a model for the role of demonstrative reasoning in science based on principles established upon observation, and this led him to make significant revisions to his views in the 1690s. On the content of Locke's natural philosophy, it is argued that even though Locke adhered to the ExperimentalPhilosophy, he was not averse to speculation about the corpuscular nature of matter. Anstey takes us into new terrain and new interpretations of Locke's thought in his explorations of his mercurialist transmutational chymistry, his theory of generation by seminal principles, and his conventionalism about species. (shrink)
Mit dem Handbuch Departure for Modern Europe, das die Beiträge des 2007 ausgetragenen Ersten Internationalen Kongresses der European Society for EarlyModernPhilosophy enthält, liegt erstmalig eine von Experten internationalen Ranges ...
This ambitious and important book, first published in 2001, provides a truly general account of Francis Bacon as a philosopher. It describes how Bacon transformed the values that had underpinned philosophical culture since antiquity by rejecting the traditional idea of a philosopher as someone engaged in contemplation of the cosmos. The book explores in detail how and why Bacon attempted to transform the largely esoteric discipline of natural philosophy into a public practice through a program in which practical science (...) provided a model that inspired many from the seventeenth to the twentieth centuries. Stephen Gaukroger shows that this reform of natural philosophy was dependent on the creation of a new philosophical persona: a natural philosopher shaped through submission to the dictates of Baconian method. This book will be recognized as a major contribution to Baconian scholarship, of special interest to historians of early-modernphilosophy, science, and ideas. (shrink)
The Cambridge Companion to EarlyModernPhilosophy is a comprehensive introduction to the central topics and changing shape of philosophical inquiry in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. It explores one of the most innovative periods in the history of Western philosophy, extending from Montaigne, Bacon and Descartes through Hume and Kant. During this period, philosophers initiated and responded to major intellectual developments in natural science, religion, and politics, transforming in the process concepts and doctrines inherited from (...) ancient and medieval philosophy. In this Companion, leading specialists examine earlymodern treatments of the methodological and conceptual foundations of natural science, metaphysics, philosophy of mind, logic and language, moral and political philosophy, and theology. A final chapter looks forward to the philosophy of the Enlightenment. This will be an invaluable guide for all who are interested in the philosophical thought of the earlymodern period. (shrink)
Scholarship in the history of modernphilosophy has changed dramatically in the last hundred years. Early in the twentieth century, philosophers such as Bertrand Russell and others regularly wrote on historical topics and figures, albeit from the perspective of their own contemporary concerns. But gradually, interest in the historical Descartes, Kant, and other figures fell off as more analytical approaches came to dominate. This lasted until the late 1960's, which saw a profound renaissance in historical scholarship. Philosophers (...) rediscovered the vitality of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century philosophy, using both analytical approaches--which look at historical problems through a contemporary conceptual lens--and historical approaches, which reconstruct the views of philosophers from within their conceptual framework. There is now a vital, international community engaged in this scholarship. This volume showcases the best work now being written on a wide range of issues in earlymodernphilosophy--a period in which numerous philosophical problems that continue to engage us today were first identified by Locke, Berkeley, Kant, Spinoza, Leibniz, and Descartes. Collectively the articles exemplify the diversity of methodological perspectives currently being employed by some of the most distinguished, internationally recognized experts in the field. (shrink)
Three general accounts of causation stand out in earlymodernphilosophy: Cartesian interactionism, occasionalism, and Leibniz's preestablished harmony. The contributors to this volume examine these theories in their philosophical and historical context. They address them both as a means for answering specific questions regarding causal relations and in their relation to one another, in particular, comparing occasionalism and the preestablished harmony as responses to Descartes's metaphysics and physics and the Cartesian account of causation. Philosophers discussed include Descartes, (...) Gassendi, Malebranche, Arnauld, Leibniz, Bayle, La Forge, and other, less well-known figures. (shrink)
Earlymodern philosophers looked for inspiration to the later ancient thinkers when they rebelled against the dominant Platonic and Aristotelian traditions. The impact of the Hellenistic philosophers on such philosophers as Descartes, Leibniz, Spinoza and Locke was profound and is ripe for reassessment. This collection of essays offers precisely that. Leading historians of philosophy explore the connections between Hellenistic and earlymodernphilosophy in ways that take advantage of new scholarly and philosophical advances. The (...) essays display a challenging range of methods and will be an invaluable point of reference for philosophers, historians of ideas and classicists. (shrink)
Oxford Studies in EarlyModernPhilosophy focuses on the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries--the extraordinary period of intellectual flourishing that begins, very roughly, with Descartes and his contemporaries and ends with Kant. It also publishes papers on thinkers or movements outside of that framework, provided they are important in illuminating earlymodern thought.
Oxford Studies in EarlyModernPhilosophy presents a selection of the best current work in the history of earlymodernphilosophy. It focuses on the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries--the extraordinary period of intellectual flourishing that begins, very roughly, with Descartes and his contemporaries and ends with Kant.
Richard Kennington , a professor for many years at Pennsylvania State University and the Catholic University of America, was renowned for his insight in reading and teaching earlymodernphilosophy. Although he published articles and spoke widely, never before have his writings been collected in a book. On Modern Origins deftly shows how modern thinkers assessed the errors of the classical tradition and established in its place a philosophy that fuses a new meaning of (...) nature and of theory with humanitarian goals. This volume is an essential source for scholars seeking to understand the contemporary significance of the dawning of the modern era. (shrink)
Humanism and EarlyModernPhilosophy is an original and timely volume that examines the distinctive and important role played by humanism in the development of earlymodernphilosophy. Focusing on individual authors as well as intellectual trends, this collection of essays aims to portray the humanist movement as an essential part of the philosophy of the fifteenth, sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Part of the Blackwell Readings in the History of Philosophy series, this survey of earlymodernphilosophy focuses on the key texts and philosophers of the period whose beliefs changed the course of western thought.
_ A Companion to EarlyModern Philosophy_ is a comprehensive guide to the most significant philosophers and philosophical concepts of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Europe. Provides a comprehensive guide to all the important modern philosophers and modern philosophical movements. Spans a wide range of philosophical areas and problems, including metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of science, ethics, political philosophy and aesthetics. Written by leading scholars in the field. Represents the most up-to-date research in the history of (...) class='Hi'>earlymodernphilosophy. Serves as an excellent supplement to primary readings. (shrink)
This paper examines the pressures leading two very different EarlyModern philosophers, Descartes and Locke, to invoke two ways in which thought is directed at objects. According to both philosophers, I argue, the same idea can simultaneously count as “of” two different objects—in two different senses of the phrase ‘idea of’. One kind of intentional directedness is invoked in answering the question What is it to think that thus-and-so? The other kind is invoked in answering the question What (...) accounts for the success of our proper methods of inquiry? For Descartes as well as Locke, the two kinds of “ofness” come apart as a result of strong rationalist commitments. However, I will suggest that even if we reject such commitments, we go wrong if we assume that a single kind of intentional directedness suffices to address both questions. (shrink)
In Metaphysical Themes: 1274–1671, Robert Pasnau compares the medieval and earlymodern approaches to the material-immaterial divide and suggests the medievals held the advantage on this issue. I argue for the opposite conclusion. I also argue against his suggestion that we should approach the divide through the notion of a special type of extension for immaterial entities, and propose that instead we should focus on their indivisibility.
Causality and Mind presents seventeen of Nicholas Jolley's essays on earlymodernphilosophy, which focus on two main themes. One theme is the continuing debate over the nature of causality in the period from Descartes to Hume. Jolley shows that, despite his revolutionary stance, Descartes did no serious re-thinking about causality; it was left to his unorthodox disciple Malebranche to argue that there is no place for natural causality in the new mechanistic picture of the physical world. (...) Several essays explore critical reactions to Malebranche's occasionalism in the writings of Leibniz, Berkeley, and Hume, and show how in their different ways Leibniz and Hume respond to Malebranche by re-instating the traditional view that science is the search for causes. A second theme of the volume is the set of issues posed by Descartes' innovations in the philosophy of mind. It is argued that Malebranche is once again a pivotal figure. In opposition to Descartes Malebranche insists that ideas, the objects of thought, are not psychological but abstract entities; he thus opposes Descartes' 'dustbin theory of the mind'. Malebranche also challenges Descartes' assumption that intentionality is a mark of the mental and his commitment to the superiority of self-knowledge over knowledge of body. Other essays discuss the debate over innate ideas, Locke's polemics against Descartes' theory of mind, and the issue of Leibniz's phenomenalism. A major aim of the volume is to show that philosophers in the period are systematic critics of their contemporaries and predecessors. (shrink)
ABSTRACTThe paper focuses on the gradual separation between materialism and mechanism in earlymodern German philosophy. In Germany the distinction between the two concepts, originally introduced by Leibniz, was definitively stated by Wolff who was the first to provide a definition of the new philosophical term Materialismus, and of the related philosophical sect. In the first part I describe the initial identification of mechanism and materialism in German philosophy between the last decades of the seventeenth century (...) and 1720. Mechanism is here mostly conceived within a monistic metaphysics of body, which refers mainly to Hobbes and to some interpretations of Spinoza’s pantheism. This tight connection between a mechanical explanation of nature and the Deus sive natura issue leads to a negative judgement on mechanism and its materialistic implications, both charged with a form of more or less explicit atheism. In the second part I describe the gradual emancipation in Germany of mechanism fro... (shrink)
This paper analyses the different ways in which Isaac Newton employed queries in his writings on natural philosophy. It is argued that queries were used in three different ways by Newton and that each of these uses is best understood against the background of the role that queries played in the Baconian method that was adopted by the leading experimenters of the early Royal Society. After a discussion of the role of queries in Francis Bacon’s natural historical method, (...) Newton’s queries in his Trinity Notebook are shown to reveal the influence of his early reading in the new experimentalphilosophy. Then after a discussion of Robert Hooke’s view of the role of queries, the paper turns to an assessment of Newton’s correspondence and Opticks. It is argued that the queries in his correspondence with Oldenburg on his early optical experiments are closely tied to an experimental program, whereas the queries in the Opticks are more discursive and speculative, but that each of these uses of queries represents a significant Baconian legacy in his natural philosophical methodology.Author Keywords: Bacon; Experiment; Hypothesis; Method; Newton; Query. (shrink)
Rival Enlightenments, first published in 2001, is a major reinterpretation of earlymodern German intellectual history. Ian Hunter approaches philosophical doctrines as ways of fashioning personae for envisaged historical circumstances, here of confessional conflict and political desacralization. He treats the civil philosophy of Pufendorf and Thomasius and the metaphysical philosophy of Leibniz and Kant as rival intellectual cultures or paideiai, thereby challenging all histories premised on Kant's supposed reconciliation and transcendence of the field. This study reveals (...) the extraordinary historical self-consciousness of the civil philosophers, who repudiated university metaphysics as inimical to the intellectual formation of those administering desacralized territorial states. The book argues that the marginalization of civil philosophy in post-Kantian philosophical history may itself be seen as a continuation of the struggle between the rival enlightenments. Combining careful and well-documented scholarship with vivid polemic, Hunter presents penetrating insights for philosophers and historians alike. (shrink)
Bringing together an international team of historians of science and philosophy to discuss the fate of matter and form, this volume shows how disputes about matter and form spurred innovation as well as conservatism in earlymodern science ...
In this volume Smith examines the earlymodern science of generation, which included the study of animal conception, heredity, and fetal development. Analyzing how it influenced the contemporary treatment of traditional philosophical questions, it also demonstrates how philosophical pre-suppositions about mechanism, substance, and cause informed the interpretations offered by those conducting empirical research on animal reproduction. Composed of essays written by an international team of leading scholars, the book offers a fresh perspective on some of the basic problems (...) in earlymodernphilosophy. It also considers how these basic problems manifested themselves within an area of scientific inquiry that had not previously received much consideration by historians of philosophy. (shrink)