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Descartes' Laws of Motion

Isis 57 (2):220-234 (1966)

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  1. Descartes' Quantity of Motion: 'New Age' Holism Meets the Cartesian Conservation Principle.Edward Slowik - 1999 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 80 (2):178–202.
    This essay explores various problematical aspects of Descartes' conservation principle for the quantity of motion (size times speed), particularly its largely neglected "dual role" as a measure of both durational motion and instantaneous "tendencies towards motion". Overall, an underlying non-local, or "holistic", element of quantity of motion (largely derived from his statics) will be revealed as central to a full understanding of the conservation principle's conceptual development and intended operation; and this insight can be of use in responding to some (...)
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  • Descartes, Spacetime, and Relational Motion.Edward Slowik - 1999 - Philosophy of Science 66 (1):117-139.
    This paper examines Descartes' problematic relational theory of motion, especially when viewed within the context of his dynamics, the Cartesian natural laws. The work of various commentators on Cartesian motion is also surveyed, with particular emphasis placed upon the recent important texts of Garber and Des Chene. In contrast to the methodology of most previous interpretations, however, this essay employs a modern "spacetime" approach to the problem. By this means, the role of dynamics in Descartes' theory, which has often been (...)
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  • Descartes' Forgotten Hypotheses on Motion.Edward Slowik - 2002 - Journal of Philosophical Research 27:433-448.
    This essay explores two of the more neglected hypotheses that comprise, or supplement, Descartes’ relationalist doctrine of bodily motion. These criteria are of great importance, for they would appear to challenge Descartes’ principal judgment that motion is a purely reciprocal change of a body’s contiguous neighborhood. After critiquing the work of the few commentators who have previously examined these forgotten hypotheses, mainly, D. Garber and M. Gueroult, the overall strengths and weaknesses of Descartes’ supplementary criteria will be assessed. Overall, despite (...)
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  • 'Absurd' Rationalist Cosmology: Copernicus, Kepler, Descartes and the Religious Basis for the End to Aristotelian Dogma.Nicholas Smit-Keding - 2016 - Constellations (University of Alberta Student Journal) 7 (1):7.
    Current popular narratives regarding the history of astronomy espouse the narrative of scientific development arising from clashes between observed phenomena and dogmatic religious scripture. Such narratives consider the development of our understandings of the cosmos as isolated episodes in ground-breaking, world-view shifting events, led by rational, objective and secular observers. As observation of astronomical development in the early 1600s shows, however, such a narrative is false. Developments by Johannes Kepler, for instance, followed earlier efforts by Nicholas Copernicus to refine Aristotelian-based (...)
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  • Descartes' Physiology and its Relation to His Psychology.Gary Hatfield - 1992 - In John Cottingham (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Descartes. Cambridge University Press. pp. 335--370.
    Descartes understood the subject matter of physics (or natural philosophy) to encompass the whole of nature, including living things. It therefore comprised not only nonvital phenomena, including those we would now denominate as physical, chemical, minerological, magnetic, and atmospheric; it also extended to the world of plants and animals, including the human animal (with the exception of those aspects of the human mind that Descartes assigned to solely to thinking substance: pure intellect and will). Descartes wrote extensively on physiology and (...)
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  • Force and Inertia in Seventeenth-Century Dynamics.Alan Gabbey - 1971 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 2 (1):1.
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