René DESCARTES : Descartes’ Discourse on Method, and Other Writings

Translated with an Introduction by Arthur Wollaston.

Publication Information : Book Title : Descartes’ Discourse on Method, and Other Writings. Contributors : Rene Descartes – author, Arthur Wollaston – transltr. Publisher : Penguin Books. Place of Publication : Baltimore, MD. Publication Year : 1960.


If this Discourse seems too long to be read at a sitting, one can divide it into six parts. In the first there are various considerations touching the sciences. The second contains the principal rules of the method the author has been seeking, and the third some of those rules of morality which he has derived from his method. The fourth part gives the reasons by which he proves the existence of God and of the human soul which are the foundation of his metaphysics. In the fifth part the author sets out the order of the problems in physics which he has examined, and makes particular reference to the explanation of the movement of the heart, to various other difficulties which belong to the science of medicine, and to the difference there is between the human and the animal soul. Finally, in the sixth part, the author explains what he thinks he requires in order to make further progress in his researches, and gives his reasons for writing.

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