The Battle of Gods and Giants Redux is a collection of 14 original essays by leading scholars in the field. Part One includes figures and topics associated with Descartes, the chief idealist in the story, including Leibniz, Spinoza, and Malebranche; Part Two includes figures and topics that fall on the Gassendist materialist side of the battle, including Hobbes, Bayle, and Locke. In organizing these varied discussions along these themes and lines, something more than the sum of the parts emerges. The reader will gain a breadth and depth of insight into the battle of ideas in early modern thought—historical, philosophical, and interpretive.
Contributors are: Margaret Atherton, Martha Brandt Bolten, Patricia Easton, Lorne Falkenstein, Nicolas Jolley, José Maia Neto, Steven Nadler, Alan Nelson, Lawrence Nolan, Donald Rutherford, Tad Schmultz, Kurt Smith, Julie Walsh, and Richard Watson.
Patricia Easton, Ph.D. (1993), Claremont Graduate University, is Professor of Philosophy. She is author and editor of numerous articles and full length studies in the history of modern philosophy, particularly the history of René Descartes and the Cartesians of the seventeenth century.
Kurt Smith, Ph.D. is a Professor of Philosophy at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania. He has published several books, journal articles, and encyclopedia entries focused on the early modern period.
LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS
INTRODUCTION: Explanatory narratives in the history of philosophy
FOREWORD: Pascal, Piety, and Les Roannez
PART ONE: THE GODS
What is Ancient in French Cartesianism?
Leibniz, Plato, and “The Dignity of Our Mind”
Lennon on Descartes and Skepticism
JOSE MAIA NETO
Clarity and Distinctness as Cartesian Criteria: A Response to Lennon
Descartes’ Logic and the Paradox of Deduction
ALAN NELSON & BRIAN ROGERS
Cartesian Trialism on Trial: The Conceptualist Account of Descartes’
Spinoza, Maimonides, and Prophecy
Malebranche, Freedom, and the Divided Mind
PART TWO: THE GIANTS
Hobbes on Moral Virtue and the Laws of Nature
Sincerity and Skepticism in Pierre Bayle
Locke and Berkeley on Real Knowledge
Berkeley’s Visual Language Thesis
Berkeley on Situation and Inversion
Primarily scholars, philosophy professors and students studying early modern philosophy, and secondarily philosophy students and scholars working on contemporary themes in perception, language, and metaphysics.