Suárez’s Last Stand for the Substantial Form

Helen Hattab

in The Philosophy of Francisco Suárez

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199583645
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738456 | DOI:
Suárez’s Last Stand for the Substantial Form

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In this essay Suárez’s defense of the scholastic doctrine of substantial forms is critically examined. Suárez’s innovative solution to the problem of the eduction of form from matter during substantial change is shown to rely on a reversal of the traditional priorities of the Thomists. Because Suárez made the substantial form in some sense physical rather than metaphysical, he was able to solve the problem of eduction. But in solving this he did irreparable damage to the Scholastic account of scientific explanation and paved the way for the rise and acceptance of the mechanical philosophy in the seventeenth century.

Keywords: Francisco Suárez; substantial form; eduction; scientific explanation; mechanical philosophy

Chapter.  9981 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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