Descartes, René - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 7 pages of information about Descartes, René.
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Doubt and Method

Descartes's most famous book is the Discourse on Method (1637), which is divided into six parts, each developing one of the key ideas that run throughout his writing. In Part One, he presents the idea of doubt. He rejects all traditional thinking because it does not produce proven conclusions that can guide life. The traditional liberal arts education promotes philosophical disputes that are never resolved. Similarly, the moral customs of people around the world are contradictory, and there is no reliable way to resolve this confusion. So Descartes decides to turn inward, to seek within himself some source of conclusive knowledge.

Although modern science often seems to require doubting all traditional beliefs and customs, historians of science have noticed that modern science depends on intellectual traditions. Scientists tend to work within what Thomas S. Kuhn (1922–1996) called "paradigms," broad intellectual frameworks that organize research...

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This section contains 2,021 words
(approx. 7 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Descartes, Ren Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics
Descartes, René from Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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