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Descartes' Meditations
A Critical Guide


Part of Cambridge Critical Guides

Thomas M. Lennon, Michael W. Hickson, Deborah Brown, Daniel Garber, Martha Brandt Bolton, Tad M. Schmaltz, John Carriero, Gary Hatfield, Karen Detlefsen, Lilli Alanen, Jorge Secada, Lisa Shapiro
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  • Date Published: November 2014
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107463172

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About the Authors
  • Descartes' Meditations, one of the most influential works in western philosophy, continues to provoke discussion and debate. This volume of original essays by leading established and emerging early modern scholars ranges over all six of the Meditations and explores issues such as scepticism, judgement, causation, the nature of meditation and the meditator's relation to God, the nature of personhood, Descartes' theory of sense perception and his ideas on the nature of substance. The contributors bring new insights to both central and less-studied topics in the Meditations, and connect the work with the rich historical and intellectual context in which Descartes forged his thought. The resulting volume will appeal to a wide range of scholars of early modern thought.

    • Provides coverage of many central, long-discussed themes in the Meditations as well as fresh perspectives on these topics
    • Draws extensively on historical background to provide greater understanding of the contexts behind Descartes' thought
    • Includes contributions from established and emerging scholars, considering new developments in the field
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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2014
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107463172
    • length: 278 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.38kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Skepticism:
    1. The skepticism of the first meditation Thomas M. Lennon and Michael W. Hickson
    2. Descartes and content skepticism Deborah Brown
    Part II. Substance and Cause:
    3. Descartes against the materialists: how Descartes' confrontation with materialism shaped his metaphysics Daniel Garber
    4. Thinking: the nature of Descartes' mental substance Martha Brandt Bolton
    5. Causation and causal axioms Tad M. Schmaltz
    Part III. Sensations:
    6. Sensation and knowledge of body in Descartes' Meditations John Carriero
    7. Descartes on sensory representation, objective reality, and material falsity Gary Hatfield
    Part IV. The Human Being:
    8. Teleology and natures in Descartes' sixth meditation Karen Detlefsen
    9. The role of will in Descartes' Account of Judgment Lilli Alanen
    10. God and meditation in Descartes' Meditations on First Philosophy Jorge Secada
    11. Cartesian selves Lisa Shapiro.

  • Editor

    Karen Detlefsen, University of Pennsylvania
    Karen Detlefsen is Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania. She has previously contributed articles to Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy, Perspectives on Science and Philosophy Compass.


    Thomas M. Lennon, Michael W. Hickson, Deborah Brown, Daniel Garber, Martha Brandt Bolton, Tad M. Schmaltz, John Carriero, Gary Hatfield, Karen Detlefsen, Lilli Alanen, Jorge Secada, Lisa Shapiro

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