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The Philosophical Writings of Descartes (Volume I)
These two 1985 volumes provide a translation of the philosophical works of Descartes, based on the best available Latin and French texts. They are intended to replace the only reasonably comprehensive selection of his works in English, by Haldane and Ross, first published in 1911. All the works included in that edition are translated here, together with a number of additio...more
Paperback, 418 pages
Published August 30th 1985 by Cambridge University Press
(first published 1911)
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In high school, and on so many occasions I heard talk about Rene Descartes "Method" which is the Method of Directing Thought. Many,many years later I came accross this book and out of curiosity peeked what is the Method about. The rest is history. I feel completely in tune with Descartes writing, which is no philosophical gibberish. This is a practical mathematitian's observations and rules for efficient use of mind.
In Spring 1976, I took a course on Descartes that featured his basic works - Discourse on Method and Rules for the Direction of the Mind - among others. This was a a good course that was one of my first experiences going through philosophical texts in detail. Everyone should try to work through Descartes, especially given how is work is simplified and distorted.
Descartes' writing is an odd bird for modern readers, because much of his philosophical writing has provided a crucial underpinning for modernity, much of his scientific work has been superceded. While elements of his thought--the importance of doubt, theory of the subject, etc.--are crucial to anyone who wants to understand any modern philosophy, his science is more historically interesting than scientifically interesting. For instance, Descartes is absolutely convinced that a vaccuum is a scie...more
As much as I would like to praise myself for being able to read this for my graduate journal/research paper, I am confident to say that I am not confident about what I've understood from Descartes' philosophical projects. Mimicking and revising the words of Plato, I am wise for being able to claim that I know less about Descartes' philosophy. Nevertheless, I might not agree with Descartes when it comes to the practicality of his thoughts, but who knows what groundbreaking truth lies beneath the...more
René Descartes, also known as Renatus Cartesius (Latinized form), was a highly influential French philosopher, mathematician, scientist, and writer. He has been dubbed the "Father of Modern Philosophy," and much of subsequent Western philosophy is a response to his writings, which continue to be studied closely. His influence in mathematics is also apparent, the Cartesian coordinate system that is...moreMore about René Descartes...