9 June 2023 3pm

Aaron Wells (Paderborn University)

On line seminar - to register, please send an email to silvia.debianchi@unimi.it

This video is part of the PROTEUS project that has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (Grant agreement No. 758145)



Both Emilie Du Châtelet and Kant argue for the continuity of matter from the premise that geometrical space is continuous. In this talk I first consider what it means to say that space is continuous, and find that Du Châtelet discusses two senses of continuity that don’t appear in Kant. Next, I discuss the inference from the continuity of geometrical space to the continuity of matter, which these philosophers uphold in part due to their idealism about matter and space. I also consider the concern that each philosopher prominently criticizes some other inferences from properties of geometry to properties of matter, and that these criticisms seem to generalize to the case of continuity. Finally, I raise a tension, arising for each philosopher, about the respective priority of parts and wholes.