Learning from Six Philosophers, Volume 1: Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume

Paperback | November 21, 2003

byJonathan Bennett

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Jonathan Bennett engages with the thought of six great thinkers of the early modern period: Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume. While not neglecting the historical setting of each, his chief focus is on the words they wrote. What problem is being tackled? How exactly is thesolution meant to work? Does it succeed? If not, why not? What can we learn from its success or its failure? These questions reflect Bennett's dedication to engaging with philosophy as philosophy, not as museum exhibit, and they require a close and demanding attention to textual details; these beingtwo features that characterize all Bennett's work on early modern philosophy. For newcomers to the early modern scene, this clearly written work is an excellent introduction to it. Those already in the know can learn how to argue with the great philosophers of the past, treating them as colleagues, antagonists, students, teachers.Volume 1: In this volume Jonathan Bennett examines the views of Descartes, Spinoza, and Leibniz on matter and space, the foundations of physics, atomism and alternatives to it, causation, knowledge of necessary truths, how mind relates to body, the nature and significance of human desires, ourperception of the material world, and other topics. While exhibiting and celebrating the wonderful breadth, depth, and boldness of the thinking of these philosophers, Bennett also tracks them into the details, where the life is, evaluating their doctrines and arguments on their own merits and inrelation to current philosophical problems and interests.

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Jonathan Bennett engages with the thought of six great thinkers of the early modern period: Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume. While not neglecting the historical setting of each, his chief focus is on the words they wrote. What problem is being tackled? How exactly is thesolution meant to work? Does it succeed? If not...

Jonathan Bennett was formerly at the Universities of Cambridge and British Columbia, and at Syracuse University, New York.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:432 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.85 inPublished:November 21, 2003Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019926628X

ISBN - 13:9780199266289

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Table of Contents

Volume 11. Cartesian and Aristotelian Physics2. Matter and Space3. Descartes's Physics4. Descartes's Dualisms5. Descartes on Causation6. Preparing to Approach Spinoza7. One Extended Substance8. Explaining the Parallelism9. Explanatory Rationalism10. Spinoza on Belief and Error11. Desire in Descartes and Spinoza12. Leibniz Arrives at Monads13. Causation and Perception in Leibniz14. Leibniz's Physics15. Harmony16. Animals that Think17. Leibniz's Contained-Predicate Doctrine18. Leibniz and Relations19. Descartes's Search for Security20. Descartes's Stability Project

Editorial Reviews

`Review from previous edition Bennett ... tackles each philosopher head-on, aiming to expound his doctrines and arguments to contemporary readers, to evaluate them, and to make living works of them ... I am convinced that this is the best way to read the philosophers of the past ... I cannotreport on all the riches of these two absolutely admirable volumes, written in a clear style and giving sense to the phrase search for truth.'Pascal Engel, Revue Philosophique