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Monads, Composition, and Force: Ariadnean Threads through Leibniz's Labyrinth

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2019.04.12 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Richard T. W. Arthur, Monads, Composition, and Force: Ariadnean Threads through Leibniz's Labyrinth, Oxford University Press, 2018, 329pp., $80.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780198812869. Reviewed by Ursula Goldenbaum, Emory University With this book, Richard Arthur provides a thoroughgoing investigation of Leibniz's metaphysics, aiming to rule out the prevailing phenomenalistic reading of Leibniz and thereby Leibniz's idealism. He is confident that he can provide convincing new arguments by starting from the continuum problem and tracing Leibniz's solutions to that problem at different periods. While he admits that there are clear statements of Leibniz about the phenomenal character of bodies, motion, and derivative forces, he finds it "hard to see why their composition would be a problem", if the idealist reading were correct -- a reading which for him is a view of bodies as "merely intentional objects of the perceptual states of monads". (5) We would "lose the connection that Leibniz... Read More

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

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