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Matter Matters – Metaphysics and Methodology in the Early Modern Period - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Matter Matters: Metaphysics and Methodology in the Early Modern Period

Kurt Smith


Why is there a material world? Why is it fundamentally mathematical? This book explores a seventeenth‐century answer to these questions as it emerged from the works of Descartes and Leibniz. What we learn is the sense in which these philosophers held that an analysis of the material world must inevitably lead to mathematics, and that mathematics must inevitably take matter as its object. Here the connection between matter and mathematics was cast in terms of the conditions of intelligibility—matter is what underwrote the very intelligibility of mathematics. Thus, in every world in which mathem ... More

Keywords: Descartes, Leibniz, mathematics, conditions of intelligibility, intelligibility of mathematics

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2010 Print ISBN-13: 9780199583652
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199583652.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Kurt Smith, author
Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania
Author Webpage