Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy, Volume VII$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Daniel Garber and Donald Rutherford

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198748717

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198748717.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 19 October 2019

Absolute Space and the Riddle of Rotation

Absolute Space and the Riddle of Rotation

Kant’s Response to Newton

(p.256) (p.257) 8 Absolute Space and the Riddle of Rotation
Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy, Volume VII

Marius Stan

Oxford University Press

Newton had a fivefold argument that true motion must be motion in absolute space, not relative to matter. Like Newton, Kant holds that bodies have true motions; unlike Newton, Kant takes all motion to be relative to matter, not to space itself. The chapter shows that Kant addresses just one part of Newton’s case, namely, his ‘argument from the effects’ of rotation; and, to establish that rotation is relative to matter, Kant changes the meaning of ‘relative motion’. However, that change puts Kant’s doctrine in deep tension with Newton’s science. Based on this construal, the chapter corrects earlier readings of Kant by Earman and Carrier; and argues that Friedman’s influential interpretation needs to be revised. Kant’s struggle, the chapter concludes, illustrates the difficulties early modern relationists faced when they rejected Newtonian absolute space; and it typifies their selective engagement with Newton’s case for it.

Keywords:   Immanuel Kant, Isaac Newton, absolute space, relationism, motion

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .