Spinoza Past and Present

Essays on Spinoza, Spinozism, and Spinoza Scholarship


Spinoza Past and Present consists of twelve essays on Benedictus de Spinoza’s Jewish background, his views on metaphysics, mathematics, religion and society. Special attention is paid to the various ways in which Spinoza’s works have been interpreted from the late seventeenth century to the present day. In particular, Spinoza’s recent popularity among advocates of the Radical Enlightenment is discussed: Van Bunge proposes a new interpretation of Spinoza’s role in the early Dutch Enlightenment.

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Wiep van Bunge, Ph.D. (1990), Erasmus University Rotterdam, is Professor of the History of Philosophy and Dean of the Faculty of Philosophy at that university. He has published widely on the history of philosophy in the Dutch Republic.
"This is a work of solid and lucidly written scholarship, and van Bunge offers balanced and informative assessments of discussed topics […] I highly recommend the book to all those who want to obtain a more nuanced picture of Spinoza’s historical and philosophical context and of the influence of his thought." – Valtteri Viljanen, University of Turku, in: Renaissance Quaterly 66/3 (Fall 2013), p. 1054
''In sum, this is a rich and varied collection of essays that will be of great interest not only to Spinoza scholars but to anyone interested in the Enlightenment and in Dutch intellectual history. It is a brilliant set of studies that illuminates the intellectual and historical contexts of Spinoza's philosophy, as well as its reception and influence.'' – Steven Nadler, in: Notre Dame Philosophical Review, 2013.03.19
"Une collection d’essais riche et variée, qui sera d’un grand intérêt non seulement pour les spécialistes de Spinoza mais aussi pour quiconque s’intéresse aux Lumières et à l’histoire intellectuelle des Pays-bas." – Steven Nadler, University of Wisconsin-Madison, in: Archives de Philosophie 76/4 (2013), p. 742

1. Baruch or Benedict? Spinoza as a ‘Marrano’
2. The Autonomy of the Attributes
3. The Idea of a Scientific Moral Philosophy
4. Spinoza and the Collegiants
5. The Idea of Religious Imposture
6. The Politics of the Passions
7. Causation and Intelligibility in the Tractatus theologico-politicus
8. Vondel’s Noah on God and Nature
9. Censorship of Philosophy in the Seventeenth-Century Dutch Republic
10. Nineteenth and Twentieth-Century Dutch Spinozism
11. Radical Enlightenment: a Dutch Perspective
12. Spinoza Past and Present

All interested in early modern philosophy and anyone concerned with the part it played in ‘the making of Modernity’.