René Descartes Books

Rene Descartes

Easton Press René Descartes books:
Discourse on Method - 1992
Writings of René Descartes - Library of The Great Philosophers

Franklin Library René Descartes books:
Philosophical works of René Descartes - 100 Greatest Books of All Time - 1981
René Descartes and Spinoza - Great Books of the Western World - 1982



Discourse on Method
Rene Descartes has often been called the father of modern philosophy, and it is certainly true that his influence has pervaded western thought at least until the present century. The "Discourse" is the exposition of the famous "Method" by which this brilliant mathematician tried to apply mathematical methods to and thus to discover mathematical certainties in all fields of human inquiry. Starting from universal doubt he passes, via the celebrated phrase "cogito ergo sum" to the certainty of the existence of God and hence of the reality of created nature.

Philosophical Works
Descartes was prepared to go to any lengths in his search for certainty even to deny those things that seemed most self-evident. In his Meditations of 1641, and in the Objections and Replies that were included with the original publication, he set out to dismantle and then reconstruct the idea of the individual self and its existence. In doing so, Descartes developed a language of subjectivity that has lasted to this day and also took his first steps towards the view that would eventually be expressed in the epigram Cogito, ergo sum ('I think, therefore I am'), one of modern philosophy's most famous and most fiercely controversial claims.

Unlike the medieval philosophers who often began by examining the existence and nature of God in a spirit of faith, Descartes begins by reflecting upon himself as one who doubts but who nonetheless desires certain knowledge of God and the world. In setting forth the truths he discovers, Descartes hoped that his "Principles of Philosophy" would provide a new basis for human knowledge and, most especially, a new footing for scientific inquiry."


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