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THE RELATION BETWEEN PHYSICS AND METAPHYSICS IN DESCARTES AND THE EARLY FRENCH CARTESIANS

Mihnea Dobre, Descartes and Early French Cartesianism: Between Metaphysics and Physics (Bucharest: Zeta Books, 2017), ISBN: 978-606-697-041-9, 422 pp.

Grigore VIDA

 

Descartes and Early French Cartesianism: Between Metaphysics and Physics (“Foundations of Modern Thought” series; Bucharest: Zeta Books, 2017) is Mihnea Dobre’s doctoral thesis, defended quite a while ago, in 2010. Since then, Dobre has continued to deepen his research into French Cartesianism, with a special focus on the problems raised by historiographical categories like rationalism, empiricism and various other “-isms”; among other things, he has co-edited in 2013 an important collection of essays on “Cartesian Empiricisms”. The present volume is concerned with the relation between metaphysics and physics in Descartes and his early French followers; it’s a big topic, involving many ramifications and difficult interpretative challenges. Dobre keeps tight to the subject and tries to hold a balance between the French and the Anglo-Saxon scholarship on Descartes, though he is clearly more influenced by the latter one

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