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Early German Reactions To Huet's Censura

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Chapter Summary

Two refutations of the Censura were immediately published in the same year, 1690: one in Bremen by Joh. Eberhard Schweling (or Sweling, 1645-1714), and the other by Andreas Petermann (1649-1703) in Leipzig. This chapter deals with those two early defences of Cartesian philosophy. The German Cartesians were obviously ill at ease with methodical doubt, and it is clear that it was hard for them to distinguish it from skepticism. This short survey of two refutations of Huet's Censura are interesting mainly from the assertive picture of Cartesianism they convey: a Cartesianism adapted to the use in the Schools and the Academies, playing down some of the main assets of the new philosophy and standing on a defensive line which forces Descartes's thought into the systematic pattern of academic philosophy.

Keywords: Andreas Petermann; Cartesian philosophy; Huet's Censura; Joh. Eberhard Schweling; skepticism



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