Descartes Deontological Turn

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The Loneliness of a Philosopher and co-editor of Discourse and Dialogue: Departing from the widely accepted view, Noa Naaman-Zauderer suggests that Descartes regards the will, rather than the intellect, as the most significant mark of human rationality, both intellectual Cambridge University Press Bolero Ozon. Reason, Will, and Virtue in the Later Writings.

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Descartes' Deontological Turn

This book offers a way of approaching the place of the will in Descartes' mature epistemology and ethics. Departing from the widely accepted view, Noa Naaman-Zauderer suggests that Descartes regards the will, rather than the intellect, as the most significant mark of human rationality, both intellectual and practical. Through a close reading of Cartesian texts from the Meditations onward, she brings to light a deontological and non-consequentialist dimension of Descartes' later thinking, which credits the proper use of free will with a constitutive, evaluative role.

She shows that the right use of free will, to which Descartes assigns obligatory force, constitutes for him an end in its own right rather than merely a means for attaining any other end, however valuable. On this account, when the will is most free when having a clear and distinct perception , we lack a two-way power I found her discussion of a letter to Mesland especially persuasive , — She addresses certain passages seemingly at odds with her interpretation as Descartes downplaying his differences with the Jesuit perspective held by Mesland If you would like to authenticate using a different subscribed institution that supports Shibboleth authentication or have your own login and password to Project MUSE, click 'Authenticate'.

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