Theology and the Cartesian Doctrine of Freedom, now for the first time available in English, was Étienne Gilson's doctoral thesis and part of a larger project to show the medieval roots of Descartes at a time when the very existence of medieval philosophy was often ignored. Descartes's great intellectual mission in life was not his mathematics but his physics, which was understood as a part of philosophy. We see him navigate the shoals of heated theological and religious strife in his attempt to articulate the metaphysical foundation (and in particular a philosophical vision of God) for his physics or theory of nature. As a layman, he always pleaded ignorance in technically theological matters. He presented himself as a loyal Catholic, quite sincerely in the portrait Gilson paints. This is not Gilson's last work on the development of Descartes' thinking, but the book already shows the engaging, vivid historian of thought who would become world famous. As Gilson guides us through Descartes' voluminous correspondence, the feelers he sends out through his friend Marin Mersenne, his attempts to make peace with the Jesuits, we feel we have lived in seventeenth-century French intellectual circles.
|Publisher:||St. Augustine's Press|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.20(d)|
About the Author
Étienne Gilson (1884–1978) was the foremost medievalist of the twentieth century. He taught at several French universities and was a member of the Academie Française. He organized and directed the Pontifical Institute for Medieval Studies in Toronto. A philosopher and historian of ideas, Gilson is perhaps best remembered for his exploration of the concept of Christian philosophy
Table of Contents
Table of Contents Translator’s Preface Introduction Part I Divine Freedom Chapter one Descartes and Education at La Flèche. The Texts Chapter two Descartes’s Adversaries Chapter three Final Causes and the Idea of Infinity Chapter four The Sources: Duns Scotus and Mersenne Chapter five The Cartesian Account of Divine Freedom and Oratorian Theology Part II Human Freedom Chapter one Error Chapter two The Relations of Understanding and Will. Judgment Chapter three The Critique of Freedom of Indifference. Its Sources Chapter four Human Freedom in the Principia Philosophiae Chapter five Freedom of Indifference from De Libertate to Augustinus Chapter six Descartes and Nascent Jansenism Chapter seven Descartes and Dogmata Theologica of Fr. Petau Conclusion Bibliography Index of Names