Berkeley (1685-1753) held that matter does not exist, and that the sensations we assume are caused by an indifferent and independent world are instead caused directly by God. Nature has no existence apart from the spirits who transmit and receive it. In this book, the author presents these conclusions as natural (though by no means inevitable) consequences of Berkeley's reflections on such topics as representation, abstraction, necessary truth, and cause and effect.
The author offers new interpretations of Berkeley's views on unperceived objects, corpuscularian science, and our knowledge of God and other minds.
`This densely argued, scholarly, and detailed analysis of his account of perception and related metaphysical issues is a welcome addition to the literature.
`The discussion throughout the book is remarkably well-informed. Winkler moves through the Berkeleyan corpus with facility and confidence.
Times Higher Education Supplement
`Winkler provides a careful and historically informed discussion of the major issues germane to Berkeley's immaterialism. This book is clear in style and argumentation. It challenges many of the standard interpretations of Berkeley's philosophy. While one might question several of Winkler's conclusions, his thorough knowledge and careful examinations of the texts challenges any critic to provide a more coherent account.
Daniel E. Flage, James Madison University, The Review of Metaphysics
`There are several striking things about Winkler's book. One is that he does not directly address Berkeley's immaterialism until Chapter 6 ... One is struk too by Winkler's impressive scholarship. He is not only au courant with the issues he discusses, but is fully able to place them in their 17th and 18th century context.