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date: 20 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Pierre-Sylvain Régis was considered as the “prince of the Cartesian philosophers”: he was a prominent conférencier and he had written a renowned textbook. But what is it to be Cartesian for Régis? His System of Philosophy is presented as an exposition of his master’s philosophy, incorporating the contributions of other heirs of Descartes and developing philosophical connections with other “moderns” such as Hobbes. Régis’s relationship with Malebranche, Cordemoy, and La Forge is quite complex: Régis does not hesitate to implicitly use their works while explicitly arguing with them. However, Régis is much closer to the metaphysical, psychological, and gnoseological theories supported by Desgabets: they both oppose the major current of Cartesianism, refusing to attribute any activity independent from the body to the soul. Studying the Système is an excellent way to understand what Cartesianism has become in the late seventeenth century: a huge stage where Descartes’s heritage is being interpreted in different ways.

Keywords: Pierre-Sylvain Régis, metaphysics, gnoseology, Desgabets, Malebranche, occasionalism

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