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Description - Descartes: A Biography by Desmond M. Clarke

Rene Descartes is best remembered today for writing 'I think, therefore I am', but his main contribution to the history of ideas was his effort to construct a philosophy that would be sympathetic to the new sciences that emerged in the seventeenth century. To a great extent he was the midwife to the Scientific Revolution and a significant contributor to its key concepts. In four major publications, he fashioned a philosophical system that accommodated the needs of these new sciences and thereby earned the unrelenting hostility of both Catholic and Calvinist theologians, who relied on the scholastic philosophy that Descartes hoped to replace. His contemporaries claimed that his proofs of God's existence in the Meditations were so unsuccessful that he must have been a cryptic atheist and that his discussion of skepticism served merely to fan the flames of libertinism. This is the first biography in English that addresses the full range of Descartes' interest in theology, philosophy and the sciences and that traces his intellectual development through his entire career.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780521823012
ISBN-10: 0521823013
Format: Hardback
(228mm x 152mm x 34mm)
Pages: 520
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 1-Mar-2006
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Desmond M. Clarke

Desmond Clarke is Professor of Philosophy at University College Cork. He received a D.Litt from th National University of Ireland, was Jean Monnet Fellow at the European Univeristy Institute in Florence, and has been elected to the Royal Irish Academy. He is the author of a number of books on Descartes and the seventeenth century, most recently Descartes' Theory of Mind.

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