By Stephen Gaukroger
This publication bargains with a formerly missed episode within the historical past of good judgment and theories of cognition: the way conceptions of inference replaced through the seventeenth century. Gaukroger makes a speciality of the paintings of Descartes, contrasting his clarification of inference as an immediate grab in accord with the traditional mild of cause with the Aristotelian view of inference as a discursive strategy. He deals a brand new interpretation of Descartes' contribution to the query, revealing it to be an important boost over humanist and past due Scholastic conceptions, and argues that the Cartesian account performed a pivotal function within the improvement of our realizing of the character of inference.
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Additional info for Cartesian Logic: An Essay on Descartes's Conception of Inference
I DESCARTES'S CONCEPTION OF INFERENCE 29 any way which would suggest that it had a connection with the new conception of eternal truths. Secondly, while Descartes holds both doctrines after 1630, he never discusses them together or even in the same context. As well as the three letters to Mersenne of 1630, the doctrine of eternal truths is discussed or mentioned in letters to Mersenne of 17 May 1638 and to Mesland of 2 May 1644, in the Replies to the Fifth and Sixth sets of Objections to the Meditations and in the Principles (I, arts.
This doctrine then seems to mirror the doctrine of intuition which, on Hacking's interpretation, maintains that we need only intuition, and not deduction, in grasping truths. There are a number of problems with this association of the two doctrines. In the first place, they are developed independently. 3 The doctrine of eternal truths, on the other hand, only makes an appearance in 1630, in the letters to Mersenne. Moreover, although the term intuitus tends to disappear after the Regulae, the doctrine itself does notit is to be found as late as the 1640S in the Search after Truth (AT x.
They also have a place in rhetoric. But they playa role in science as well, and here such devices are designed to take us, ultimately, to first principles which can be grasped in their own right by some form of immediate intellectual apprehension (vails} Aristotle begins his scientific texts not with a presentation of first principles but with a dialectical discussion of the views of his predecessors and contemporaries. 16 So it is the topics that play the role of a method of discovery in Aristotle.
Cartesian Logic: An Essay on Descartes's Conception of Inference by Stephen Gaukroger