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::: center home >> events >> lunchtime >> 2007-08 >> abstracts

Tuesday, 16 October 2007
Newton and the Concept of Force
Koffi Maglo , University of Cincinnati
12:05 pm, 817R Cathedral of Learning

Abstract: Scholars remain divided about the epistemic status of the concept of force in Newton’s Principia. Some argue that the concept is simply a mathematical construct and ontologically neutral. Others contend that Newton’s methodology is broad and is part of an attempt to construct a broader metaphysics. Against these views, I maintain that 1) Newton conceived and treated force as a fundamental ontological category but 2) the investigation of Newton’s background assumptions about force is not a sufficient basis upon which to ground speculation as Newton’s construction of an overarching metaphysical framework for his science.

Revised 3/6/08 - Copyright 2006