Early Modern Philosophy

This course will provide a general introduction to epistemological and metaphysical ideas developed by such philosophers as Descartes, Spinoza, Locke, Berkeley, and Hume. What (if anything) can I really and truly know? How can I know it? Does everything that exists and everything that happens do so as a matter of necessity? Would this leave room for freedom and moral responsibility? Can all of our ideas be derived from experience or must some of them have a different origin? Are there insoluble problems with the concept of matter Is inductive reasoning grounded merely on instinct? How is geometrical knowledge possible and what does this reveal about the nature of reality?