New Essays on the Rationalists

Philosophical Review 110 (4):600 (2001)
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Abstract

Dr. Johnson famously observed that in lapidary inscriptions a man is not upon oath. This observation applies with equal force to publishers and their advertisements for books. According to the blurb, the present volume “offers essential critical material for both novice and advanced scholars of early modern philosophy.” In fact, it would be a remarkably sophisticated novice who could derive much benefit from this anthology of essays on seventeenth-century Rationalism; not merely do the authors engage with difficult issues of interpretation but they often presuppose a detailed knowledge of the various positions in the exegetical debates. Nonetheless, the volume does live up to the second part of its billing: it offers a great deal for the specialist to get his or her teeth into. Despite the demands they make upon the reader, the contributions are of an almost uniformly high quality. The volume has its origins in a NEH Summer Seminar conducted by Jonathan Bennett, who himself contributes a characteristically elegant and lucid essay on Descartes’s theory of space. Bennett may take a justifiable pride in the accomplishments of the participants in his seminar.

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Nicholas Jolley
University of California, Irvine

Citations of this work

Jean-Paul Sartre and the HOT Theory of Consciousness.Rocco J. Gennaro - 2002 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 32 (3):293-330.
Spinoza's Thinking Substance and the Necessity of Modes.Karolina Hübner - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 92 (1):3-34.

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