Chapter

The Realm of Reason

Stephen Gaukroger

in The Collapse of Mechanism and the Rise of Sensibility

Published in print November 2010 | ISBN: 9780199594931
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595745 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199594931.003.0008
The Realm of Reason

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In the course of the eighteenth century, natural philosophy began to take on a new cultural standing, emerging as the paradigm bearer of, and the standard for, cognitive values. It was Fontenelle who had established the standing of natural philosophy in France as a worthy and useful form of inquiry, but it was Voltaire who had elevated its standing further by making it into the model for cognitive grasp per se. In d'Alembert's preliminary Discours to the Encyclopédie, a more elaborate statement of the archetypal role of natural philosophy in cognitive enquiry was set out.

Keywords: François‐Arouet Voltaire; Jean d'Alembert; Denis Diderot; Encyclopédie; Enlightenment

Chapter.  16664 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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