A Discourse on the Method: of Correctly Conducting Ones Reason and Seeking Truth in the Sciences

Paperback | May 17, 2008

byRene DescartesTranslated byIan Maclean

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'I concluded that I was a substance whose whole essence or nature resides only in thinking, and which, in order to exist, has no need of place and is not dependent on any material thing.'Descartes's A Discourse on the Method of Correctly Conducting One's Reason and Seeking Truth in the Sciences marks a watershed in European thought; in it, the author provides an informal intellectual autobiography in the vernacular for a non-specialist readership, sweeps away all previousphilosophical traditions, and sets out in brief his radical new philosophy, which begins with a proof of the existence of the self (the famous 'cogito ergo sum'), next deduces from it the existence and nature of God, and ends by offering a radical new account of the physical world and of human andanimal nature.This new translation is accompanied by a substantial introductory essay which draws on Descartes's correspondence to examine his motivation and the impact of his great work on his contemporaries. Detailed notes explain his philosophical terminology and ideas.

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'I concluded that I was a substance whose whole essence or nature resides only in thinking, and which, in order to exist, has no need of place and is not dependent on any material thing.'Descartes's A Discourse on the Method of Correctly Conducting One's Reason and Seeking Truth in the Sciences marks a watershed in European thought; i...

Ian Maclean, Professor of Renaissance Studies, University of Oxford.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:160 pages, 7.72 × 5.08 × 0.43 inPublished:May 17, 2008Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199540071

ISBN - 13:9780199540075

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Table of Contents

Introduction:A Philosopher's LifeThe Genesis of the Discourse and its DevelopmentGalileo, Mersenne, and the Church: Authority and TruthThe Publication of the DiscourseThe DiscoursePart Six: the Presentation of the DiscourseParts One and Two: Intellectual AutobiographyParts Two and Three: Precepts in PhilosophyPart Four: Metaphysics and EpistemologyPart Five: Physics and PhysiologyThe Essays published with the DiscourseDescartes as a WriterEnvoi: the Cartesian Philosophical Edifice