Experience Embodied: Early Modern Accounts of the Human Place in Nature

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2022.09.01 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews

Anik Waldow, Experience Embodied: Early Modern Accounts of the Human Place in Nature, Oxford University Press, 2020, 312pp., $90.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780190086114.

Reviewed by Charles Wolfe, Université de Toulouse

This very clearly written and argued study takes as its theme what the author, Anik Waldow, calls “embodied experience” in early modern philosophy, focusing on some classic figures (Descartes, Locke, Hume, Kant) and some less classic ones, although not too far off the perimeter (Rousseau, Herder). The chapters existed in an earlier form as independent articles on individual figures, but are carefully rewritten and combined here. This combination of names shows, at least to those with some interest in overcoming textbook categorizations, that Waldow neatly rejects the rationalism/empiricism distinction, calling her decision to include Kant and Descartes in a book on experience “part of the critical effort to reveal the serious deficiency of the post-Kantian distinction between empiricism and rationalism” (10). But what…

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