Giambattista Vico: Keys to the "New Science"

Giambattista Vico: Keys to the "New Science" : Translations, Commentaries, and Essays

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Giambattista Vico: Keys to the "New Science" brings together in one volume translations, commentaries, and essays that illuminate the background of Giambattista Vico's major work. Thora Ilin Bayer and Donald Phillip Verene have collected a series of texts that help us to understand the progress of Vico's thinking, culminating in the definitive version of the New Science, which was published in 1744.

Bayer and Verene provide useful introductions both to the collection as a whole and to the individual writings. What emerges is a clear picture of the decades-long process through which Vico elaborated his revolutionary theory of history and culture. Of particular interest are the first sketch of the new science from his earlier work, the Universal Law, and Vico's response to the false book notice regarding the first version of his New Science.

The volume also includes additions to the 1744 edition that Vico had written out but that do not appear in the English translations-including his brief chapter on the "Reprehension of the Metaphysics of Descartes, Spinoza, and Locke"-and a bibliography of all of Vico's writings that have appeared in English. Giambattista Vico: Keys to the "New Science" is a unique and vital companion for anyone reading or rereading this landmark of Western intellectual history.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 140 x 216 x 13mm | 249.48g
  • Ithaca, United States
  • English
  • 9 Halftones, black and white
  • 0801474728
  • 9780801474729
  • 86,592

Table of contents

Introduction: Interpreting the New Science
Part 1: Background of the New Science in the Universal Law (1720-2722)
Synopsis of Universal Law
The True and the Certain: From On the One Principle and One End of Universal Law
A New Science Is Essayed: From On the Constancy of the Jurisprudent
On Homer and His Two Poems: From the Dissertations
Vico's Address to His Readers from a Lost Manuscript on JurisprudencePart 2: Reception of the First New Science (1725)
Vico's Reply to the False Book Notice: The Vici VindiciaePart 3: Additions to the Second New Science (1730/1744)
Vico's "IGNOTA LATEBAT": On the Impresa and the Dipintura
Vico's Addition to the Tree of the Poetic Sciences and His Use of the Muses
Vico's Reprehension of the Metaphysics of Rene Descartes, Benedict Spinoza, and John Locke
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Review quote

"This is a fine and comprehensive summary of a controversial and many-faceted thinker. It draws upon Vico's lesser known writings in his long and complex pilgrimage from humanist philology through jurisprudence and Homeric poetry to philosophy. This includes not only the crucial published work on universal law but also a manuscript fragment relating to it, Vico's reply to the early review of his 'new science,' additions to the second edition of work, his late conception of the classical muses, his 'tree of knowledge,' and his critique of Descartes, Spinoza, and Locke. All of these, not always available in the existing English translations, come with important and valuable interpretation, commentary, and a review of Vico's metaphysics. A complete bibliography of English-language translations of Vico's writings is appended. Vico's work is seldom, if ever, seen historically and as a whole. This work is much more significant than the numerous speculative interpretations that place him in fanciful contexts, and it is essential to a correct and comprehensive view of the scholar who was at once one of the last of the humanists and one of the first practitioners and theoreticians of the modern human sciences." -- Donald R. Kelley, James Westfall Thompson Professor of History Emeritus, Rutgers University, and former Executive Editor, Journal of the History of Ideas
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About Giambattista Vico

Thora Ilin Bayer is RosaMary Foundation Professor of Liberal Arts at Xavier University of Louisiana. She is the author of Cassirer's Metaphysics of Symbolic Forms: A Philosophical Commentary. Donald Phillip Verene is Charles Howard Candler Professor of Metaphysics and Moral Philosophy and Director of the Institute for Vico Studies at Emory University. His many books include Vico's Science of Imagination and The Art of Humane Education, both from Cornell.
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