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Leibniz’s Principle of Identity of Indiscernibles$
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Gonzalo Rodriguez-Pereyra

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198712664

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198712664.001.0001

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The correspondence with Clarke

The correspondence with Clarke

(p.104) 8 The correspondence with Clarke
Leibniz’s Principle of Identity of Indiscernibles

Gonzalo Rodriguez-Pereyra

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses Leibniz’s argument for the Identity of Indiscernibles in the correspondence with Clarke. Here Leibniz uses the Principle of Sufficient Reason in a different way to derive the Identity of Indiscernibles than he does in Primary Truths. The argument from the correspondence with Clarke is examined and shown to be defective. It is also argued that this argument could only support the truth, but neither the contingency or necessity, of the Identity of Indiscernibles, and that although Leibniz seems to have wanted to extract a version of the Identity of Indiscernibles valid for all creatures from that argument, it could only lend support to a version of the Identity of Indiscernibles restricted to pieces of matter.

Keywords:   Clarke, contingency, indiscernible worlds, necessity, Principle of Sufficient Reason

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