Causation in Early Modern Philosophy: Cartesianism, Occasionalism, and Preestablished Harmony

Overview

Three general accounts of causation stand out in early modern philosophy: 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 ...

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Overview

Three general accounts of causation stand out in early modern philosophy: 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.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780271026572
  • Publisher: Penn State University Press
  • Publication date: 10/7/2004
  • Pages: 232
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

Steven Nadler is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and author of Malebranche and Ideas (1992), Arnauld and the Cartesian Philosophy of Ideas (1989), and editor of Malebranche: Philosophical Selections (1992).

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Table of Contents

Contributors
Abbreviations
Introduction 1
Descartes and Occasionalism 9
Influxus Physicus 27
The Occasionalism of Louis de la Forge 57
Malebranche, Models, and Causation 75
Causation and Preestablished Harmony in the Early Development of Leibniz's Philosophy 93
Compossibility and Law 119
Natures, Laws, and Miracles: The Roots of Leibniz's Critique of Occasionalism 135
Constancy, Emergence, and Illusions: Obstacles to a Naturalistic Theory of Vision 159
Mechanism as a Silly Mouse: Bayle's Defense of Occasionalism against the Preestablished Harmony 179
The Value of Harmony 197
Index 217
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