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Interpreting Spinoza


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 (ISBN-13: 9780521871839)

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Interpreting Spinoza

Cambridge University Press
9780521871839 - Interpreting Spinoza - Critical Essays - Edited by Charlie Huenemann


The philosophy of Spinoza is increasingly recognized as holding a position of crucial importance and influence in early modern thought, and in recent years it has been the focus of a rich and growing body of scholarship. In this volume of essays, leading experts in the field offer penetrating analyses of his views about God, necessity, imagination, the mind, knowledge, history, society, and politics. The essays treat questions of perennial importance in Spinoza scholarship but also constitute new and critical examinations of his worldview. Scholars of modern philosophy will welcome this volume as a collection of some of the very best recent work done on Spinoza’s philosophy.

CHARLIE HUENEMANN is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Utah State University.


Critical Essays



Utah State University

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First published 2008

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Notes on contributorspage vii
Method of citationix
Charlie Huenemann
1Representation and consciousness in Spinoza’s naturalistic theory of the imagination
Don Garrett
2Rationalism run amok: representation and the reality of emotions in Spinoza
Michael Della Rocca
3“Whatever is, is in God”: substance and things in Spinoza’s metaphysics
Steven Nadler
4Necessitarianism in Spinoza and Leibniz
Michael V. Griffin
5Epistemic autonomy in Spinoza
Charlie Huenemann
6Spinoza and the philosophy of history
Michael A. Rosenthal
7Democracy and the good life in Spinoza’s philosophy
Susan James
8Spinoza’s unstable politics of freedom
Tom Sorell
9Should Spinoza have published his philosophy?
Daniel Garber

Notes on contributors

MICHAEL DELLA ROCCA is Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at Yale University. He is the author of Representation and the Mind–Body Problem in Spinoza (1996) and of papers on Spinoza, on Descartes, and on contemporary metaphysics.

DANIEL GARBER is Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at Princeton University. He is the author of Descartes’ Metaphysical Physics (1992) and Descartes Embodied (Cambridge, 2001), and is co-editor with Michael Ayers of the Cambridge History of Seventeenth-Century Philosophy (Cambridge, 1998).

DON GARRETT is Professor of Philosophy at New York University. He is the author of Cognition and Commitment in Hume’s Philosophy (1997) and the editor of The Cambridge Companion to Spinoza (Cambridge, 1996).

MICHAEL GRIFFIN is a visiting professor at the Central European University in Budapest. He has published in the Philosophical Review, and is working on a book on Leibniz’s natural theology and metaphysics of modality.

CHARLIE HUENEMANN is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Utah State University. He has published New Essays on the Rationalists, co-edited with Rocco Gennaro (1999).

SUSAN JAMES is Professor of Philosophy at Birkbeck College, University of London. She has published The Content of Social Explanation (Cambridge, 1984), Passion and Action: The Emotions in Seventeenth-century Philosophy (1997), Visible Women: Essays in Legal Theory and Political Philosophy, co-edited with Stephanie Palmer (2002), and The Political Writings of Margaret Cavendish (Cambridge, 2003).

STEVEN NADLER is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His books include Arnauld and the Cartesian Philosophy of Ideas (1989), Malebranche and Ideas (1992), Spinoza: A Life (Cambridge, 1999), Spinoza’s Heresy: Immortality and the Jewish Mind (Oxford, 2002), and The Best of All Possible Worlds (forthcoming).

MICHAEL A. ROSENTHAL is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Washington. He is the author of numerous articles on Spinoza’s political philosophy.

TOM SORELL is John Ferguson Professor, Department of Philosophy, at the University of Birmingham. His latest book is Descartes Reinvented (Cambridge, 2005).

Method of citation

Where references are by author and year of publication, full reference information may be found in the Bibliography.

The following abbreviations have been used in referring to Spinoza’s writings:

DPPDescartes’s “Principles of Philosophy” (Renati Des Cartes Principiorum Philosophiae, Pars I et II, More Geometrico demonstratae)
EEthics (Ethica Ordine Geometrico demonstrata)
EpCorrespondence (Epistulae)
GSpinoza Opera. 4 vols. (vol. 5, 1987), ed. Carl Gebhardt. Hildesheim: Carl Winter
STShort Treatise on God, Man, and His Well-Being (Korte Verhandeling van God, de Mensch en des zelfs Welstand)
TdIETreatise on the Emendation of the Intellect (Tractatus de Intellectus Emendatione)
TPPolitical Treatise (Tractatus Politicus)
TTPTheological-Political Treatise (Tractatus Theologico-Politicus)

References to the Short Treatise on God, Man, and His Well-Being, the Treatise on the Emendation of the Intellect, the Political Treatise, and the Theological-Political Treatise are by chapter and, within chapters, sometimes also by the section numbers introduced in the Bruder edition of Spinoza’s works and reproduced in many subsequent editions.

Some of the essays in this volume also employ further abbreviations for citations; they are explained within the notes of those essays.

References to the Correspondence are by letter number.

References to Descartes’s Ethics begin with an Arabic number denoting the Part, and use the following common abbreviations:

dDefinition (when not following a Proposition number)
dDemonstration (when following a Proposition number)
daDefinitions of the Affects (located towards the end of Ethics, Part 3)
sScholium (Note)

For example, “E 1p14d,c1” refers to Ethics, Part 1, Proposition 14, Demonstration and Corollary 1.

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