In his Meditations, Descartes recounts the conversion of his naïve and errant self, subject to misleading appearances, into a seer of sublime discrimination. The way to such intellectualized redemption is itself errant, a detour into the dark machinations of a dematerializing demiurge, Descartes's Devil (looking suspiciously like his God). The aim of this essay is to give the under-imagined Cartesian demon his due and track the effects of this never-quite-expurgated figure on the coherence of a paradigmatic form of early modern selfhood.
Research Article|September 01 2018
Devil’s Due: The Logic of Conversion in Descartes’s Meditations
Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (2018) 48 (3): 599-616.