Philosophy 25B

Spring 2005

Number Title Instructor Days/time Room
25B Modern Philosophy McCann TuTh 8-9:30 145 Dwinelle

A survey of the major philosophers of the modern period (17th and 18th centuries): Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume and Kant. The defining characteristic of philosophy in this period was the rejection of Aristotelian philosophy as developed in the Scholastic tradition and the rise of a new mathematical/mechanical philosophy of nature (the so-called Scientific Revolution, whose major figures include Copernicus, Brahe, Kepler, Galileo, Descartes, Boyle, and Newton). We will focus on such metaphysical and epistemological issues as: the nature of substance, causation, space and time, identity (including personal identity), the relation between mind and body, the existence, attributes, and providence of God, skepticism about the external world, induction, and the structure and limits of scientific explanation. All readings are selections from primary sources (in some cases, translations of such sources).

Previously taught: SU04D, SU04A, SP04.