Linked bibliography for the SEP article "Continental Rationalism" by Thomas M. Lennon and Shannon Dea

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Primary Sources


  • Oeuvres De Descartes, 11 vols., C. Adam and P. Tannery, Eds., aris: Librairie Philosophique J. Vrin, 1983.
  • The Philosophical Writings of Descartes, 3 vols., J. Cottingham, R. Stoothoff, and D. Murdoch, Trans. Vol. 3 including A. Kenny, Trans., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1984–88.
  • The Correspondence Between Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia and René Descartes, Lisa Shapiro (ed. and trans.), Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007.


  • Œuvres complètes de Malebranche, 20 vols., A. Robinet (ed.), Paris: J. Vrin, 1958–84.
  • Dialogues on Metaphysics, W. Doney, Trans., New York: Abaris Books, 1980.
  • Dialogue between a Christian Philosopher and a Chinese Philosopher on the Existence and Nature of God, D. A. Iorio (trans.), Washington: Catholic University Press, 1980.
  • Treatise on Ethics, C. Walton (trans.), Dordrecht: Kluwer, 1993.
  • Dialogues on Metaphysics and on Religion, N. Jolley and D. Scott (trans.), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.
  • The Search after Truth, T. M. Lennon and P. J. Olscamp (trans.), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.


  • Spinoza Opera, 5 volumes. C. Gebhardt (Ed.), Heidelberg: Carl Winters, 1925–87.
  • The Collected Writings of Spinoza, E. Curley (trans. and ed.), Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1985.
  • Complete Works, S. Shirley (trans.), M. Morgan (ed.), Indianapolis: Hackett, 2002.


  • Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz: Sämtliche Schriften und Briefe, German Academy of Science, Darmstadt and Berlin: Berlin Academy, 1923–.
  • Philosophical Essays, R. Ariew and D. Garber (eds. and trans.), Indianapolis: Hackett, 1989.
  • Opuscules et Fragments Inédits de Leibniz, L. Couturat (ed.), Paris: Felix Alcan, 1903.
  • Leibnizens Mathematische Schriften, C. I. Gerhardt (ed.), Berlin: Weidman, 1875–90.
  • Die Philosophischen Schriften von Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, C.I. Gerhardt (ed.), Berlin: Weidman, 1875–90.
  • Theodicy, A. Farrer (ed.) and E. Huggard (trans.), New Haven: Yale University Press, 1952.
  • Philosophical Papers and Letters, L. Loemker (ed.), 2nd ed., Dordrecht: Reidel, 1969.
  • Philosophical Writings, M. Morris and G. Parkinson (eds. and trans.), London: Dent, 1973.
  • New Essays on Human Understanding, P. Remnant and J. Bennett (ed. and trans.), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982.
  • Leibniz: Selections, P. Wiener (Ed.), New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1951.

Secondary Sources

  • Adams, Robert Merrihew, 1994, Leibniz: Determinist, Theist, Idealist, Oxford: Oxford University Press. [A careful and penetrating study that benefits from the author's extensive of knowledge of Leibniz's oeuvre.] (Scholar)
  • Allison, Henry, 1987, Benedict de Spinoza: An Introduction, New Haven: Yale University Press. [A classic work by an eminent Spinoza scholar. Suitable for beginners, but also useful for those well-versed in Spinoza.] (Scholar)
  • Bennett, Jonathan, 1984, A Study of Spinoza's Ethics, Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing. [A clear, penetrating study of Spinoza whose arguments and analogies have entered the scholarly idiom. Essential reading for Spinozists.] (Scholar)
  • Boyle, Deborah, 2009, Descartes on Innate Ideas, London: Continuum. [A comprehensive study of Descartes's nativism. Boyle argues that, for Descartes, we have implicit knowledge of our innate ideas, and that reflection is required to make the knowledge explicit. The volume includes a thorough survey and critique of the secondary literature on innate ideas in Descartes.] (Scholar)
  • Carriero, John, 1995, “On the Relationship Between Mode and Substance in Spinoza's Metaphysics,” Journal of the History of Philosophy, 33.2: 245–73. [Carriero traces the medieval Aristotelian influence of Spinoza's substance/mode distinction, and in so doing challenges Curley's argument that Spinozist modal dependence is causal dependence Meditations.] (Scholar)
  • Cottingham, John, 1984, Rationalism, London: Paladin Books. [A concise, accessible survey of issues in both early modern and contemporary Rationalism.] (Scholar)
  • Curley, Edwin, 1988, Behind the Geometric Method, Princeton: Princeton University Press. [A brief, persuasive argument for a naturalistic understanding of Spinoza's Ethics by a leader in the field.] (Scholar)
  • Della Rocca, Michael, 1996, Representation and the Mind-Body Problem in Spinoza, Oxford: Oxford University Press. [The authoritative work on Spinoza's theory of ideas.] (Scholar)
  • –––, 2008, Spinoza, London and New York: Routledge. [An accessible introduction to Spinoza's main doctrines, with a useful sketch of the historical context.] (Scholar)
  • Donagan, Alan, 1988, Spinoza, Chicago: University of Chicago Press. [A spare, compulsively readable interpretation of Spinoza's mature work as a whole, with an emphasis on his naturalism.] (Scholar)
  • Fraenkel, Carlos, Dario Perinetti, and Justin Smith, Eds, 2010, The Rationalists: Between Tradition and Innovation, Dordrecht: Springer. [Essays on varied topics by key thinkers in the field, all of them devoted to understanding and problematizing the category of rationalism by considering aspects of key rationalist figures in their historical contexts.] (Scholar)
  • Frankfurt, Harry, 1965, “Descartes’ Validation of Reason,” American Philosophical Quarterly, 2: 149–56. [A seminal work dealing with the alleged circularity of Descartes's Meditations.] (Scholar)
  • Garber, Daniel and Michael Ayers, Eds., 1998, The Cambridge History of Seventeenth-Century Philosophy, 2 vols., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [This collection provides a comprehensive look at the relevant philosophical period, with invaluable material about the historical and social context.] (Scholar)
  • Garrett, Don, Ed., 1996, The Cambridge Companion to Spinoza, Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press. [Essays on all aspects of Spinoza's thought by top Spinoza scholars.] (Scholar)
  • Guéroult, Martial, 1968, Spinoza I: Dieu, Paris: Georg Olms. [Guéroult is credited with having dealt Wolfson's subjectivist account of Spinoza's attributes its death-blow.] (Scholar)
  • Huenemann, Charles, 2008, Understanding Rationalism, Durham, UK: Acumen. [A clear and helpful introduction to Descartes, Spinoza and Leibniz, written for college juniors.] (Scholar)
  • Ishiguro, Hidé, 1972, Leibniz's Philosophy of Logic and Language, Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press. [A clear, untechnical discussion of Leibniz's arguments considered in light of contemporary anglo-american logic.] (Scholar)
  • Jolley, Nicholas, Ed., 1995, The Cambridge Companion to Leibniz, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [Essays on all aspects of Leibniz's thought by top Leibniz scholars.] (Scholar)
  • Kenny, Anthony, Ed., 1986, Rationalism, Empiricism and Idealism, Oxford: Oxford University Press. [A useful collection, mostly of lectures delivered at the British Academy by leading scholars of early modern philosophy.] (Scholar)
  • Lennon, Thomas M., 1993, The Battle of the Gods and Giants: The Legacies of Descartes and Gassendi, 1655–1715, Princeton: Princeton University Press. [An account of the contest between the Cartesians and their principal opponents as an extension of the battle that Plato depicts in the Sophist between the materialists and the friends of the forms.] (Scholar)
  • Lewis, Geneviève (Rodis-), 1950, L'individualité selon Descartes, Paris: J.Vrin. [Discusses all the texts on both sides of the question of the uniqueness of extended substance.]
  • Mates, Benson, 1986, The Philosophy of Leibniz: Metaphysics & Language, Oxford: Oxford University Press. [An internalist reading of Leibniz focusing in particular on logical issues and on Leibniz's nominalism.] (Scholar)
  • McCracken, Charles J., 1983, Malebranche and British Philosophy, Oxford: Clarendon Press. [A classic account of Malebranche's influence on British philosophy, which also contains a wonderful 100-page account of Malebranche's system.] (Scholar)
  • Melamed, Yitzhak, 2011, “Spinoza's Metaphysics of Thought: Parallelisms and the Multifaceted Structure of Ideas ,” Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 1–48. [A re-interpretation of Spinozist parallelism that seeks to resolve why human beings can only know two of substance's infinite attributesMeditations.] (Scholar)
  • Nadler, Steven., Ed., 1993, Causation in Early Modern Philosophy: Cartesianism, Occasionalism, and Preestablished Harmony, University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press. [A collection of essays concerning the three main rationalist theories of causation. The essays in this collection consider not only the major figures discussed in the above article, but also a number of intermediate and minor figures.] (Scholar)
  • Nelson, Alan, Ed., 2005, A Companion to Rationalism, Oxford, Blackwell. [An ably edited collection of essays devoted to the historical antecedents of rationalism, to the movement's “golden age” and to rationalist elements in contemporary thought.] (Scholar)
  • Okruhlik, Kathleen and James R. Brown, Eds., 1985, The Natural Philosophy of Leibniz, Dordrecht: D. Reidel. [A challenging collection devoted to the role of physics and natural philosophy in the development of Leibniz's thought.] (Scholar)
  • Rozemond, Marleen, 1998, Descartes's Dualism, Cambridge: Harvard University Press. [A thorough account of the topic indicated, including valuable scholastic background.] (Scholar)
  • Russell, Bertrand, 1992, A Critical Exposition of the Philosophy of Leibniz, London: Routledge. [First published in 1900, this work includes Russell's classic arguments that the basis of Leibniz's thought lies in his Aristotelian logic, and that, for Leibniz, relational properties are merely ideal.] (Scholar)
  • Schmaltz, Tad, 2002, Radical Cartesianism: The French reception of Descartes, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [A treatment of those few—specifically, Desgabets and Régis—who accepted Descartes's doctrine of created truth.] (Scholar)
  • Sowaal, Alice, 2004, “Cartesian Bodies,” Canadian Journal of Philosophy 34.2: 217–40. [This useful article sorts Descartes's inconsistent language about substance in terms of levels.] (Scholar)
  • Wilson, Margaret Dauler, 1982, Ego Cogito, Ego Sum,New York: Routledge.[See Chapter Three for a clear and useful discussion of Descartes's doctrine of created truths.] (Scholar)
  • Wolfson, Harry, 1934, The Philosophy of Spinoza, 2 vols., Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. [Wolfson's is still the classic argument for the subjectivist account of attributes in Spinoza.] (Scholar)
  • Woolhouse, R.S., 1993, Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz: The Concept of Substance in Seventeenth Century Metaphysics, London and New York: Routledge. [A deep account of many of the themes covered here, with something of value for readers at all levels.] (Scholar)

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