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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The scholastic and experimental methods in the works of B. G. Feijoo Ayerbe, J. I.


The conflict between the scholastic and experimental methods in the works of Feijoo is essentially the conflict between traditional and contemporary thought. In this study, therefore, both methods are interpreted in a very wide sense. The scholastic method represents the traditional studies of grammar, rhetoric and logic. The experimental method represents the empirical attitude and the innovations in mathematics that begin in western Europe during the seventeenth century. The first chapter of this study defines the conflict between tradition and innovation as it appears in Feijoo's first published work, Apologia del Scepticismo Medico. The second chapter examines the traditional aspects of Feijoo's thought as they manifest themselves in his use of scholastic logic. The third chapter considers Feijoo’s debt to the innovations of Descartes. The fourth chapter examines his approach to traditional physics, modern physics and the experimental method. The final chapter shows how Feijoo's attitude to ancient and modern thought appears in his aesthetic theories.

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