Spinoza Bibliography

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Monaco, Davide:
Individuation and death in Spinoza's 'Ethics' : the Spanish poet case reconsidered

In: British Journal for the history of Ideas 27, 5 (2019), 941-958

Literature type: Articles
Language: English
Thematic areas: Anthropology / psychology / doctrine of affections / body and mind
Subject: E, Ep.

English commentary: "The example of the Spanish poet’s amnesia, mentioned by Spinoza in the scholium of proposition 39 of part IV of the Ethics in order to elucidate his conception of death, has given rise to many controversies in the scholarly interpretations, which in most cases maintain that the poet dies and that Spinoza himself thought this way. However, the matter is more complex than it at first appears and in this article I take a different path by reconstructing this scholium anew and providing an alternative interpretation. The comparison with selected passages of part V highlights the presence of a bi-conditional between the ratio of motion and rest that a body possesses, and its aptitude to be affected and affect in many more ways. In particular, the latter allows us to acknowledge the continuity of the poet’s individuality, expressed in his mind–body union grounded by the parallelism theory. As a result, the poet case has a crucial explanatory role for Spinoza’s theory of the eternity of the human mind and if one misunderstands the former, the latter is also misconceived." (abstract)

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