Force and the Nature of Body in Discourse on Metaphysics §§17-18

The Leibniz Review 7:116-124 (1997)
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According to Robert Sleigh Jr., “The opening remarks of DM.18 make it clear that Leibniz took the results of DM.17 as either establishing, or at least going a long way toward establishing, that force is not identifiable with any mode characterizable terms of size, shape, and motion.” Sleigh finds this puzzling and suggests that other commentators have generally been insufficiently perplexed by the bearing that the DM.17 has on the metaphysical issue. In this brief paper, I examine the solution that Sleigh offers to his puzzle, and present an alternative way of understanding the relationship between these two sections of the Discourse.

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Paul Lodge
Oxford University


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