Essay Review ID: CBB453047403

Scholastic Logic and Cartesian Logic (2018)


As Roger Ariew shows, one of the most fascinating challenges for the authors trying to create a Cartesian complete course on philosophy was coming up with a Cartesian Logic based on the existing texts of the master (Ariew 2014). Were the few simple rules from the Discourse on Method the "logic" of Descartes? Were the Rules for the Direction of the Mind "logic"? How can we even have a logic without syllogism? When looking at the authors studied by Ariew one finds that the best that they could come up was adding some Cartesian elements on what remains basically a traditional Aristotelian Logic. It seems that there was no Cartesian Logic after all. I want to show here that Cartesian Logic is something else, not exactly "Logic" in the way that was taught in the first year of college, but something meant to replace Aristotelian Logic once we have done away with syllogism. A treatise such as the Rules for the Direction of the Mind belongs to a new genre, one that comes out of the transformation of Aristotelian Logic in the early seventeenth century. I call this genre the "Art of discourse." In the Cartesian corpus the most complete incarnation of this genre is to be found in the (incomplete) Regulae; the preface written for the Essays of 1637, the Discourse on Method, while containing some elements of the art of discourse such as the famous "rules," remains a preface and not a systematic treatise.

Review Of

Book Ariew, Roger (2014) Descartes and the First Cartesians. unapi

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Authors & Contributors
Schmaltz, Tad M.
Evra, James W. Van
Le Grand, Antoine
Blome, Richard
Brockliss, Laurence W. B.
Blank, Andreas
Perspectives on Science
British Journal for the History of Philosophy
History and Philosophy of Logic
Science and Education
Annals of Science: The History of Science and Technology
Ancient Philosophy
Cambridge University Press
Oxford University Press
de Gruyter
Natural philosophy
Descartes, René
Ariew, Roger
Desgabets, Robert
Régis, Pierre Sylvain
Arnauld, Antoine
Huet, Pierre Daniel
Time Periods
17th century
18th century
19th century
Early modern
Rome (Italy)
Louvain (Belgium)
Université de Paris
Louvain. Université

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