Chapter

Laws of Motion

Emily R. Grosholz

in Cartesian Method and the Problem of Reduction

Published in print January 1991 | ISBN: 9780198242505
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191680502 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198242505.003.0005
Laws of Motion

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • History of Western Philosophy

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

This chapter reviews Descartes's laws of motion. It examines the consequences of the evanescent, unstable unity of Descartes's physical simples in the context of his laws of motion, which introduces a second distinct system of relations — colliding bodies that conserve something like momentum. The instability of the simples worked against Descartes's attempt to establish vortices as high-level complex unities, and to differentiate matter into three elements. Moreover, the discussion argues that a tacit change of the relational structure forces a change in the items of physics, making them less plausibly identical with the items of geometry.

Keywords: laws of motion; matter; simples; momentum; geometry

Chapter.  6818 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.