Leibniz and Clarke: A Study of Their Correspondence

Oxford University Press
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The correspondence between Leibniz and Samuel Clarke was the most influential philosophical exchange of the eighteenth century, and indeed one of the most significant such exchanges in the history of philosophy. Carried out in 1715 and 1716, the debate focused on the clash between Newtonian and Leibnizian world systems, involving disputes in physics, theology, and metaphysics. The letters ranged over an extraordinary array of topics, including divine immensity and eternity, the relation of God to the world, free will, gravitation, the existence of atoms and the void, and the size of the universe. This penetrating book is the first to offer a comprehensive overview and commentary on the Leibniz-Clarke correspondence. Building his narrative around general subjects covered in the exchange--God, the soul, space and time, miracles and nature, matter and force--Ezio Vailati devotes special attention to a question crucial for Leibniz and Clarke alike. Both philosophers, worried by the advance of naturalism and its consequences for morality, devised complex systems to counter naturalism and reinforce natural religion. However, they not only deeply disagreed on how to answer the naturalist threat, but they ended up seeing in each other's views the germs of naturalism itself. Vailati rigorously tracks the twists and turns of this argument, shedding important new light on a critical moment in modern philosophy. Lucid, taut, and energetically written, this book not only examines the Leibniz-Clarke debate in unprecedented depth but also situates the views advanced by the two men in the context of their principal writings. An invaluable reference to a fascinating exchange of ideas, Leibniz and Clarke makes vital reading for philosophers and historians of science and theology.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Oxford University Press
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Published on
Nov 27, 1997
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Pages
268
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ISBN
9780195354256
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Language
English
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Genres
Literary Collections / Letters
Philosophy / History & Surveys / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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This anthology is about the signal change in Leibniz’s metaphysics with his explicit adoption of substantial forms in 1678-79. This change can either be seen as a moment of discontinuity with his metaphysics of maturity or as a moment of continuity, such as a passage to the metaphysics from his last years.

Between the end of his sejour at Paris (November 1676) and the first part of the Hanover period, Leibniz reformed his dynamics and began to use the theory of corporeal substance. This book explores a very important part of the philosophical work of the young Leibniz.

Expertise from around the globe is collated here, including Daniel Garber’s work based on the recent publication of Leibniz's correspondence from the late 1690s, examining how the theory of monads developed during these crucial years. Richard Arthur argues that the introduction of substantial forms, reinterpreted as enduring primitive forces of action in each corporeal substance, allows Leibniz to found the reality of the phenomena of motion in force and thus avoid reducing motion to a mere appearance.

Amongst other themes covered in this book, Pauline Phemister’s paper investigates Leibniz’s views on animals and plants, highlighting changes, modifications and elaborations over time of Leibniz’s views and supporting arguments and paying particular attention to his claim that the future is already contained in the seeds of living things. The editor, Adrian Nita, contributes a paper on the continuity or discontinuity of Leibniz’s work on the question of the unity and identity of substance from the perspective of the relation with soul (anima) and mind (mens).

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Tupac Shakur was shot on September 7th, 1996 and died a week later from his injuries. His murder remains unsolved, an ending as enigmatic as his life. But while Tupac may be gone, his words live on here, giving every fan a rare glimpse inside the mind and unbroken spirit of a passionate and unpredictable musical icon.

Angela Ardis is an author, screenwriter, actress and model.
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In a volume that is penetrating, introspective, incisive, and laugh-out-loud funny, one of the great men of letters of this age–or any age–holds forth on life, art, sex, politics, and the state of America’s soul. From his coming of age in America, to his formative war experiences, to his life as an artist, this is Vonnegut doing what he does best: Being himself. Whimsically illustrated by the author, A Man Without a Country is intimate, tender, and brimming with the scope of Kurt Vonnegut’s passions.

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