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A Comparison of Selected Poetic and Scientific Works of Albrecht von Haller

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Dorothy Roller Wiswall

In this book the author investigates the parallels between Haller's poetic and scientific writings by comparing selected poems from Haller's «Versuch Schweizerischer Gedichte» with various scientific works, with respect to subject matter, structure, and style. The themes discussed in the four chapters are: nature and landscape description; truth, reason, knowledge, and their limits; theodicy, infinity, and the search for original causes. Also, a specific philosophical problem, theodicy in the poem «Über den Ursprung des Übels», is compared to a specific scientific problem, the nature of irritability and sensibility in «De partibus corporis humani sensilibus et irritabilibus», with emphasis on Haller's working method.
Contents: Introduction - Nature and Landscape Description - Truth, Reason, and Knowledge: Their Scope and Limits - Theodicy, Infinity, and the Search for Original Causes - A Scientific and a Philosophical Problem Compared - Conclusion.