The Debate on Probable Opinions in the Scholastic Tradition, Rudolf Schuessler portrays scholastic approaches to a qualified disagreement of opinions. The book outlines how scholastic regulations concerning the use of opinions changed in the early modern era, giving rise to an extensive debate on the moral and epistemological foundations of reasonable disagreements. The debate was fueled by probabilism and anti-probabilism in Catholic moral theology and thus also serves as a gateway to these doctrines. All developments are outlined in historical context, while special attention is paid to the evolution of scholastic notions of probability and their importance for the emergence of modern probability.
John Wilkins (1614-72): New Essays presents ten fresh essays on the life and work of the influential English natural philosopher and theologian, John Wilkins. Wilkins, one of the most prominent figures in the scientific revolution in England, and a founder of the Royal Society of London, published widely on astronomy, mechanics, language, and theology, and was also an important churchman and politician. These ten essays review Wilkins’s writings and influence, while also addressing the wider contexts of his activities, including his service as head of house at two successive colleges in Oxford and Cambridge, and his political work. This new collection thus covers all aspects of Wilkins’s career, and functions as a complete reappraisal of this seminal early modern figure.
Contributors are: C. S. L. Davies, Mordechai Feingold, Felicity Henderson, Natalie Kaoukji, Rhodri Lewis, Scott Mandelbrote, Jon Parkin, William Poole, Anna Marie Roos, and Richard Serjeantson.
Kant on Conscience Emre Kazim offers the first systematic treatment of Kant’s theory of conscience. Contrary to the scholarly consensus, Kazim argues that Kant’s various discussions of conscience - as practical reason, as a feeling, as a power, as a court, as judgement, as the voice of God, etc. - are philosophically coherent aspects of the same unified thing (‘Unity Thesis’). Through conceptual reconstruction and historical contextualisation of the primary texts, Kazim both presents Kant’s notion of conscience as it relates to his critical thought and philosophically evaluates the coherence of his various claims. In light of this, Kazim shows the central role that conscience plays in the understanding of Kantian ethics as a whole.
Dialogues of Maximus and Themistius is the first English translation of Pierre Bayle’s last book,
Entretiens de Maxime et de Thémiste, published posthumously in 1707. The two parts of the
Dialogues offer Bayle’s final responses to Jean Le Clerc and Isaac Jaquelot, who had accused Bayle of supporting atheism through his writings on the problem of evil. The
Dialogues defends Bayle’s thesis that the problem of evil cannot be solved by reason alone, but serves only to demonstrate the necessity of faith. In his Introduction to the
Dialogues, Michael W. Hickson provides detailed historical and philosophical background to the problem of evil in early modern philosophy, as well as summary and analysis of Bayle’s debates with Le Clerc and Jaquelot.
Over the course of thirty years, Hermann Samuel Reimarus (1694-1768) secretly drafted what would become the most thorough attack on revelation to date, ushering the quest for the historical Jesus and foreshadowing the religious criticism of the new atheism of the twentieth century. Peeling away the layers of Reimarus’s radical work by looking at hitherto unpublished manuscript evidence, Ulrich Groetsch shows that the Radical Enlightenment was more than just an international philosophical movement. By demonstrating the importance philology, antiquarianism, and Semitic languages played in Reimarus’s upbringing, scholarship, and teaching, this new study provides a vivid portrayal of an Enlightenment radical at the cusp of the secular age, whose debt to earlier traditions of scholarship remains undisputed.