Space and Time

Benson Mates

in The Philosophy of Leibniz

Published in print June 1989 | ISBN: 9780195059465
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833429 | DOI:
Space and Time

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This chapter sets forth and discusses critically Leibniz's controversy with Newton about the existence of absolute space. It also discusses the significance of the so‐called analysis situs, in which Leibniz defines a number of geometrical concepts – e.g., sphere, straight line, circle, plane – in terms of a single quaternary relation, R (a, ba, c, d), with the intuitive meaning “a is as far from b as c is from d,” and then, on the basis of these definitions, proves such theorems as “ the intersection of a sphere and a plane is a circle.”

Keywords: absolute space; analysis situs; Leibniz; Newton; space; time

Chapter.  7215 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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