Publié le 29 juin 2021 | Mis à jour le 13 juillet 2021

Perspectives on Science

Logic and Methodology in the Early-Modern Period, Volume 29, Issue 3

Date de publication: juin 2021 

Being mainly concerned with the origins and development of formal logic, current “histories of logic” often devote scarce, if any, space to logic in the early modern period. In standard narratives, emphasis is put, on one side, on Aristotle’s Organon and on the Stoics’ logic of propositions, and on the other side, on the development of mathematical logic from Boole and Frege on (Scholz 1931; Bochenski 1956; Kneale 1962; Blanché 1970). The picture often emerging from such reconstructions represents early modern philosophers— net of their criticisms of Aristotelian syllogism— as largely estranged from the discipline. It is true that, the medieval period’s concern with semantic and inference issues has been accounted for (Prantl 1855–1870; Ashworth 1988; Biard 1989, 1997; Gabbay and Woods 2008). But it is as if there were a “mise en sommeil de la logique” in the seventeenth century (Blanché 1970, p. 174). Our purpose, in this special issue, is to take a stand against this view.

Our main concern is this: why, despite such widespread rhetoric of the rejection and rupture with the logical tradition, did early modern philosophers devote so much attention to logic in the construction of their systems of knowledge? What kind of change and continuity in the understanding of the role of logic does this reflect? What does this gesture tell us about the building of the philosophical discourse?

However new early modern philosophy may have been, it did not arise in a virgin land, immune from historical determination, but owes its novelty to its reworking of traditional materials. We claim that the field of logic is particularly representative of this phenomenon. More precisely put, we explore the part played by the early moderns reshaping of logic in the perspective on their invention of early modern philosophy. We contend that a philosophical history of logic is instrumental in the making of a history of early modern philosophy that is not reduced to the listing of its authors, but is characterized by its themes, concepts and problems.

Articles : 
“A New Logic”: Bacon’s Novum Organum
The Nature of Cartesian Logic
Logic and the Movement of Reasoning: Pierre Gassendi on the Three Acts of the Mind
Who was the Founder of Empiricism After All? Gassendi and the ‘Logic’ of Bacon

Présentation du numéro sur le site

  • Auteur(s)
    Direction : Elodie Cassan (IHRIM - UMR 5317)
    Contributions de : Roger Ariew (University of South Florida), Sorana Corneanu (University of Bucharest), Rodolfo Garau (Università Ca' Foscari Venezia, Venice (UNIVE))