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Matter MattersMetaphysics and Methodology in the Early Modern Period$
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Kurt Smith

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199583652

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199583652.001.0001

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Transcendental Matter

Transcendental Matter

Chapter:
(p.267) 16 Transcendental Matter
Source:
Matter Matters
Author(s):

Kurt Smith (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199583652.003.0017

In this chapter two possible transcendental readings of Descartes's view on matter are examined. Here, the sense in which matter was taken by Descartes to be the condition underlying the conceivability of empirically real bodies is established. What is more, it is shown how this conception of matter (as an underlying condition of conceivability) applies to mathematical objects, such as numbers and geometrical figures. Appended to this chapter is the final word: ‘Tying Up the Loose Ends—Closing Remarks.’ In this last section, the chapter reflects on the seventeenth‐century answer to the question, ‘Why matter?’, posed at the beginning of the book.

Keywords:   matter, conditions of intelligibility, transcendental ideality, transcendental reality

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