Review of Dennis Des Chene, Spirits and Clocks: machine and organism in Descartes [Book Review]

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This rangy and precise book deserves to be read even by those historians who think they are bored with Descartes. While offering surprising and detailed readings of bewildering texts like theDescription of the Human Body, Des Chene constructs a powerful, sad narrative of the Cartesian disenchantment of the body. Along the way he also delivers provocative views on topics as various as teleology, the role of illustrations in the history of mechanism, theories of the sexual differentiation of the foetus, and problems of simulation in scientific method.
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Archival date: 2015-11-21
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