Position: Professor of Philosophy
BA 1979 (French literature and linguistics, Free University, Amsterdam),
PhD 1989 (UCLA)
Research: early modern philosophy, especially the boundary between the material and the immaterial. My recent focus has been on two types of argument: on one of these the subject of the mental must be simple and matter is inherently composite. The other one focuses on a common assumption in the period that matter is passive but that much of what happens in the natural world requires genuinely active entities. This line of thought often contends that not just the mental, but many phenomena in the physical world require appeal to active, immaterial entities. This project has led me to work in particular on Suárez, Descartes, Locke, Leibniz, the Clarke-Collins Correspondence, Cudworth, Conway and Cavendish.