Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The philosophical structure of the writings of William Harvey, illuminated by disputes in renaissance natural philosophy
Author: Cook, C. J.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 1995
Availability of Full Text:
Full text unavailable from EThOS.
Please contact the current institution’s library for further details.
The historiography which is the basis of this thesis is the belief that, while a strictly causal and historically certain account of the derivation of Harvey's natural philosophical views is, for reasons of contingency, unattainable, nevertheless Harvey's position on certain fundamental issues, even those only partially explicit in his writings, can be explicated with a degree of historical probability, by relating it to the position of renaissance and classical authors whose works were central in delineating such polemics at that time. It will be argued Harvey's position can be determined in regard to epistemology, ontology, and method, and that this can be related to his notion of the aims and limits of explanation in natural philosophy, and to the status of informing explanatory concepts such as cause, soul, and instrument. The advantages of this exposition for an historical explanation are: 1. the analysis of Harvey's writings can be constructed with reference to renaissance concepts; 2. his views can be considered in relation to the disputes in natural philosophy that exercised philosophers of that period; 3. his thought can be seen in terms of similarities and differences in regard to that which was prevalent at the time; 4. it can be shown that Harvey's writings, taken as a whole, which have been considered rather diverse by some historians, have a plausible unity; 5. his physiological theories on heart action, circulation of the blood, conception by contagion, epigenesis and the process of ensoulment, can be rendered mutually coherent.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available