University of New Mexico, USA
Spring Term 2012
Descartes and Newton on Mathematics, Metaphysics, and Method
Mary Domski is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of New Mexico. Before joining the UNM faculty in 2005, she taught at Fresno State for two years, and before that, she was a graduate student at Indiana University, where she earned her PhD in the History and Philosophy of Science. Mary’s research focuses on the interplay of philosophy, mathematics, and science in the early modern period, and in the work of Descartes, Newton, and Kant, in particular. She also has a strong interest in questions concerning the cooperation between the history of science and the philosophy of science and in questions about how history of philosophy, science, and mathematics might be fruitfully integrated into current debates in philosophy of science.
In addition to authoring several papers on themes in seventeenth century mathematics and science, Mary is also co-editor (with Michael Dickson) of Discourse on a New Method: Reinvigorating the Marriage of History and Philosophy of Science (Open Court, 2010) and is currently guest editor for a special issue of the Southern Journal of Philosophy dedicated to “Newton and Newtonianism.” During her time at the Center, Mary will be working on a book manuscript that brings Descartes’ and Newton’s philosophies of mathematics into conversation. The working title for the manuscript is Descartes and Newton on Mathematics, Metaphysics and Method.
When not sitting at a computer or with a book, you’ll likely find Mary trying to figure out the ins and outs of Pittsburgh, spending time with her friends in the area, happily cheering for the local sports teams, or sitting quietly in front of a television.
Served as guest editor for a special issue of The Southern Journal of Philosophy (to appear Sept 2012) dedicated to the theme "Newton and Newtonianism."
Wrote the Introduction to the volume (title: "Newton and Newtonianism: Remarks on the Current State of the Art") and also contributed a paper (title: "Newton and Proclus:
Geometry, Imagination, and Knowing Space").
During my time at the Center I also completed "Mediating Between Past and Present: Descartes, Newton, and Contemporary Structural Realism," which is forthcoming in Philosophy and Its History: New Essays on the Methods and Aims of Research in the History of Philosophy (Oxford University Press), edited by Mogens Laerke, Eric Schliesser, and Justin Smith.
In January 2012, a paper of mine appeared in Interpreting Newton: Critical Essays (edited by Andrew Janiak and Eric Schliesser). The title of that paper: "Locke's Qualified Embrace of Newton's Principia."
During the spring term, I only gave 1 talk -- my lunchtime talk at the Center. During the fall term, I gave 2 talks:
"Descartes, Newton, and the Mathematical Character of Natural Philosophy" Workshop on "Knowledge, Representation, and Proof in the Modern Era," University of Notre Dame, South Bend, IN, 3 November 2011
"Difference, Disunity, and the Dialogue between Past and Present" Philosophy and Its History: A Workshop on Methods, Aims, and New Directions in the Scholarship of Early Modern Philosophy, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada, 29-30 October 2011
In regard to my present research interests, I'll be extending my work on the role of mathematics in Descartes'