The theme of scepticism has been central in the study of the history of ideas in modern times since Richard Popkin's and Charles Schmitt's works. After them, the assumption connected with the philosophical notion of scepticism was broadened so as to define the critical use of reason and doubt concerning the truth of religion, the function of politics, the aims of science, thus becoming a central intellectual issue in the making of modernity. In this collection of articles (in fact the proceedings of an international conference held in Vercelli) special care is dedicated to placing the theme of scepticism within its philosophical tradition. Moreover, in comparison with other historical studies, the English philosophical thinkers appear here in the foreground, with a number of contributions on Hobbes, Locke, Cambridge Platonists and the Latitude-Men. The French Context also, ranging from Descartes to Malebranche, from Arnauld and Port-Royal to Huet, Bayle and his followers, is explored in depth. Some articles deal with Italian major figures (Vico and Galilei above all) and Spanish culture. Special care is dedicated to the relationships between history of philosophical ideas and the problems rising from the history of sciences (medicine, physics, linguistics, historical scholarship) in the 17th and the 18th centuries. Level of readership or target groups: University Courses, University Libraries, Specialized scholars.
Introduction; G. Paganini. For a revised history of scepticism; R.H. Popkin. 1: The English Context: From Hobbes to Locke. Hobbes among ancient and modern sceptics: phenomena and bodies; G. Paganini. John Locke and the sceptics; G.A.J. Rogers. Conjecture, conceivability, existence between Henry More and Ralph Cudworth; F. Tomasoni. 2: Descartes and His Context. Charron's epoché and Descartes' cogito: the sceptical base of Descartes refutation of scepticism; J.R. Maia Neto. Scepticisme, tromperie et mensonge chez La Mothe Le Vayer et Descartes; J.-P. Cavaillé. 3: Post-Cartesian Ramifications. Against Descartes: Marten Schoock's De Scepticismo; A. Del Prete. Huet, Malebranche and the birth of skepticism; T.M. Lennon. Arnauld's posthumous defense of the philosophie humaine against heretics and sceptics; G. Belgioioso. Foucher and the dilemmas of representation: a modern problem? E. Scribano. Scepticism and analysis: Villemandy as a critic of Descartes; C. Borghero. Sceptical readings of Cartesian evidence in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Italy; M.T. Marcialis. 4: Politics and Religion. Scepticism at Port Royal: the perversion of Pyrrhonian doubt; A. McKenna. Sorbière's scepticism: between naturalism and absolutism; L. Bianchi. Scepticism and the theory of toleration: human fallibility and `adiaphora'; L. Simonutti. 5: Scepticism and Sciences. Medicine and skepticism: Martín Martínez (1684-1734); J.C. Laursen. From Galileo to Vico. The uncertainty and arrogance of knowledge; M. Torrini. Scepticism and semantic theory: from Locke to Du Marsais; G. Hassler. Le vertige dupyrrhonisme: Hardouin face à l'histoire; C. Grell. 6: Bayle's Age. Théories sceptiques de la politique: Montaigne et Bayle; F. Brahami. Pierre Bayle on scepticism and common notions; G. Mori. Religious truth and freedom of conscience in Noodt and Barbeyrac: the confrontation with Bayle; F. Lomonaco. 7: After Bayle: Scepticism and Anti-Scepticism. De la controverse anti-romaine à la théologie naturelle: parcours anti-sceptiques de Jean-Alphonse Turrettini; M.-C. Pitassi. Formey et Crousaz, ou comment fallait-il combattre le scepticisme? J. Häseler. Jean Meslier, le doute méthodique et le matérialisme; M. Benítez. Index.
This collection of articles (the Vercelli conference proceedings) places the theme of scepticism within its philosophical tradition. It explores the English philosophical thinkers, the French context, as well as major Italian figures and Spanish culture. It pays special attention to the relationships between history of philosophical ideas and the problems rising from the history of sciences (medicine, physics, linguistics, historical scholarship) in the 17th and the18th centuries.