Steven Nadler presents the first English translation of a seminal work in the history of early modern philosophy. Geraud de Cordemoy's Six Discourses on the Distinction Between the Soul and the Body (originally published in French in 1666) offers an account of the mind and the body in a human being. Cordemoy is an unorthodox Cartesian who opts for an atomist conception of body and matter. In this groundbreaking treatise, he also presents one of the
earliest arguments for an occasionalist account of causation, with God serving as the true cause of bodily motions in the world and of ideas in the mind. Nadler also includes the first English translation of Cordemoy's short Treatises on Metaphysics, which were probably written soon after the Discourses, and extend
his discussion of mind-body union with consideration of human freedom and happiness. The introduction provides a biographical and historical context for Cordemoy's work and a study of his main philosophical doctrines, including his influence on later thinkers (such as Leibniz and Malebranche).
Steven Nadler has been teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Madison since 1988. He has been a visiting professor at Stanford University, the University of Chicago, Ecole des hautes etudes en sciences sociales (Paris), the University of Amsterdam, and Ecole normale superieure (Paris). Nadler is a specialist in the history of early modern philosophy (especially seventeenth century) and medieval Jewish philosophy, and the author of Occasionalism (OUP, 2010) and Spinoza's Heresy (OUP, 2004).
SIX DISCOURSES ON THE DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE BODY AND THE SOUL; TREATISES ON METAPHYSICS