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The Philosophy of the Young KantThe Precritical Project$
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Martin Schönfeld

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780195132182

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0195132181.001.0001

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f o u r f o u r The Conversion to Newton

f o u r f o u r The Conversion to Newton

Chapter:
(p.73) F O U R The Conversion to Newton
Source:
The Philosophy of the Young Kant
Author(s):

Martin Schöneld

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0195132181.003.0005

This chapter explores Kant’s studies from 1754 to 1757, the application of his dynamic perspectives to fire, tides, the Earth’s rotation, climate, winds, and earthquakes. Section 1 surveys the background of Kant’s efforts in the 1750s, such as how his earthquake papers relate to the Lisbon tsunami (1755), and describes his co-discovery of sea wind patterns and his discovery of the monsoon dynamics. Section 2 examines Kant’s study of the fate of Earth’s rotation (1754) and its correct determination of the dynamic interplay among lunar period, tidal forces, oceanic friction, and the long-term slowdown of Earth’s rotation. Section 3 discusses Kant’s Master’s Thesis (1755), his chemical conjectures on fire, and his attempt to clarify the spatial energy field, the ether. Section 4 examines Kant’s qualitative approach to cosmological questions and his heuristic reliance on analogical reasoning.

Keywords:   spin cycle, Meditation on Fire, Universal Natural History, West Winds, On Winds, earthquake, Huygens, Newton, Lisbon, seismology

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