Descartes' works include "Musicae Compendium," "The World," "Man," "Dioptrics," "The Meteors," "Geometry," "Discourse on the Method," "The Meditations," "Principles of Philosophy," "The Search for Truth," "The Description of the Human Body" and "Passions of the Soul." Some were published posthumously as were some essays and letters that were lesser known.Continue Reading
Descartes was a French scholar, mathematician and philosopher who lived from 1596 to 1650. He is credited as the father of modern Western philosophy, analytic geometry and the Cartesian coordinate system (named for the Latin translation of Descartes' name). He also played a key role in the scientific revolution of Europe that subsequently lead to the social movement of the Enlightenment era.
The quote "I think therefore I am," remains the hallmark of Descartes' philosophy. It appeared for the first time in "Discourse on the Method," but was also referenced in later works. Descartes posited that because man can err in reasoning or be mislead by his senses, he must strip away all he believed was real and view it as merely an illusion. Inferring, however, that there is a being, a man who is capable of perceiving or pondering himself and his environment at all was undeniable proof that he, at the very least, existed. This proof became a pillar for many of Descartes' later arguments.Learn more about Philosophy
Denis Diderot, an important figure in the 18th-century French Encyclopedist movement, believed in the Enlightenment ideals of rationality and human progress, according to the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy; these beliefs are apparent in his work on the Encyclopedie. Diderot was also a political radical, and he openly expressed atheism in many of his essays and other literary work.Full Answer >
French philosopher and mathematician Rene Descartes is behind many important concepts, from the Cartesian plane in mathematics to the "I think, therefore I am" philosophy. Descartes was born to humble beginnings, but he managed to become an important thinker and notable person.Full Answer >
Descartes' theory of knowledge is that it is a conviction based on reason that is so strong that no feeling of doubt can change it. Descartes' epistemology is largely described in terms of being the contrast of doubt, according to Stanford University.Full Answer >
According to Wichita State University, Rene Descartes invented the Cartesian Plane, which is a theory of using ordered pairs to determine a specific point. This theory, explained in "La Geometrie," led to the invention of analytical geometry in which algebra is applied to geometry.Full Answer >