New Studies in the Philosophy of Descartes: Descartes as Pioneer

By Norman Kemp Smith | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XI

"C'est qu'en réalité le véritable but que poursuit Descartes est extérieur à la métaphysique. Il ne transforme les conceptions traditionnelles que lorsqu'il s'y trouve contraint, c'est-à-dire lorsque les exigences de sa physique sont incompatibles avec la théologic communément enseignée. . . . Tout se passe en général comme s'il s'était proposé bien plutôt d'adapter aux exigences de la physique nouvelle les thèses de la théologic traditionnelle en leur faisant subir le minimum de déformation."-- É. GILSON, La Liberté chez Descartes et la théologie ( 1913), pp. 441-2.

" Descartesest le philosophe des idées claires et distinctes; son nom est symbole de lumière et d'intelligibilité; il évoque un systéme qui se déroule avec aisance et qui séduit la raison; pourtant, le premier éblouissement passé, qu'on regarde un peu attentivement le bel édifice; que de recoins obscurs, que d'escaliers dérobés, que de styles différents dans cette œuvre que l'architecte a voulue originale et une!"-- GOUHIER, La Pensée religieuse de Descartes ( 1924), p. 66.

"Modern criticism opened with the remark of Freudenthal that the novelty of Cartesianism lay not in its psychology, its theory of knowledge, its ethics, or its metaphysics, but in its physics; and the justly admired labours of M. Gilson have confessedly only worked out the detail of this all-important theme. . . . The Cartesian 'revolution' lay in the attempt to substitute a physics based on metaphysics for a metaphysics based on physics. It may well be that in this, as has been maintained, it was only following the Platonic element in the emergence of the modern mind from Scholasticism, but there is no doubt that it was reversing the main current which went to make up that mighty, and not yet exhausted, stream."-- L. ROTH. Descartes' Discourse on Method ( 1937), pp. 4-5.

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New Studies in the Philosophy of Descartes: Descartes as Pioneer
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface v
  • Bibliography vii
  • Abbreviations ix
  • Contents xi
  • Chapter I 2
  • Appendix A DESCARTES' THREEFOLD DREAM 33
  • Appendix B DESCARTES' ENCOUNTER WITH CHANDOUX, AND SUBSEQUENT INTERVIEW WITH CARDINAL DE BÉRULLE 40
  • Chapter II 48
  • Chapter III 84
  • Chapter IV 102
  • Chapter IV Descartes' Universal Physics as Outlined in His Traité De La Lumière 103
  • Chapter V 124
  • Chapter VI 138
  • Chapter VII 162
  • Chapter VIII 190
  • Chapter IX 220
  • Chapter X 259
  • Chapter XI 294
  • Chapter XII 308
  • Chapter XIII 322
  • INDEX OF PROPER NAMES 365
  • INDEX OF SUBJECTS 367
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