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The Light of the SoulTheories of Ideas in Leibniz, Malebranche, and Descartes$
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Nicholas Jolley

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198238195

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198238193.001.0001

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(p.1) 1 Introduction
The Light of the Soul

Nicholas Jolley (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The Cartesian–Lockean conception of the mental may have won out in the seventeenth century, but only after encountering a powerful current of opposition. Here, the most important figure is Malebranche, who reverts to the Augustinian tradition by espousing vision in God and divine ideas. This study focuses on Descartes, Malebranche, and Leibniz as major participants in a dialogue on the nature of ideas, and ultimately, on the nature of the mind. One central issue in the debate is whether intentionality is the mark of the mental. By isolating the view of these three thinkers, it is possible to tell a historically important story, which is also philosophically coherent.

Keywords:   Arnauld, Cartesian, Descartes, divine ideas, ideas, light of the soul, Malebranche, mind, Pauline theology, sentiments, Spinoza, voluntarism

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