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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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Necessity revisited

Necessity revisited

(p.118) 9 Necessity revisited
Leibniz’s Principle of Identity of Indiscernibles

Gonzalo Rodriguez-Pereyra

Oxford University Press

Chapter 9 revisits the topic of the necessity of the Identity of Indiscernibles. There is a passage from a letter to Johann Bernoulli of 1699 and some passages from the letters to Clarke where Leibniz seems to commit to the contingency of the Identity of Indiscernibles. The issue is aggravated in the letters to Clarke because in that work Leibniz also commits himself to the necessity of the Identity of Indiscernibles. The chapter also examines these passages, paying a close look at their contexts, and concludes that there is little evidence that Leibniz thought the Identity of Indiscernibles to be contingent. It is also explained why Leibniz seems to commit to the contingency of the Identity of Indiscernibles in his letters to Clarke.

Keywords:   Bernoulli, Clarke, contingency, necessity

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