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Naturbegriffe und Natururteile

Nature volume 71, page 270 (19 January 1905) | Download Citation



THIS book deals chiefly with three topics. Starting on a Kantian basis, it seeks to state the a priori principles of pure physical science. (A priori is conveniently defined as “independent of the amount of experience.”) Next, the leading principles of “energetics” are discussed, and their relation on the one hand to the a priori principles of pure physical science, and on the other hand to the ordinary laws of thermodynamics. Incidentally, the “laws” of conservation (of substance and the like) are examined, and entropy has a good deal of attention. Last of all the results attained are carried over to a discussion of biology. The point of view is neo-vitalistic. It would be hazardous to say that the author has run to earth the x which is the object of all our search, the vital principle or whatever other name may be applied to it; the term which he uses is the blessed word entelechy.

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