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I specialize in early modern natural philosophy and mathematics, as well as the history and philosophy of time and the infinite. See research interests for details. See also latest news

I am more active than ever in my writing and research collaborations. Based in Toronto, I still supervise some students, and teach occasionally, even though I officially retired from McMaster University in July 2018, where I am now Professor Emeritus.

My latest book is Leibniz on Time, Space, and Relativity, coming out soon with OUP.  In it I give (i) an account of Leibniz’s relational theory of time, relating it to his theory of possible worlds, his complex account of contingency, and his highly original treatment of the continuity of time, providing formal treatments in an appendix; (ii) a detailed study of the development of his theory of space in relation to his analysis situs and to his deep metaphysics; and (iii) a thorough treatment of his views on the relativity of motion, in relation to his dynamics, the issue of Copernicanism, and the question of the foundation of motion through space and time. It is a sister volume to Monads, Composition, and Force: Ariadnean Threads through Leibniz's Labyrinth, published by OUP in 2018 (winner of the 2019 JHP prize for best book in the history of philosophy from 2018.)

In between, in May 2019, my The Reality of Time Flowlocal becoming in modern physics (xii + 289 pp.) came out in Springer's Frontiers Collection. In it I defend the reality of (local) becoming in modern physics against the multifarious objections of philosophers from the Ancients through Russell to Smart, Grünbaum and Putnam, and physicists such as Barbour and Rovelli (although Rovelli has since come round to a similar point of view on local becoming). Here’s a review.

Also available, my An Introduction to Logic, Using Natural Deduction, Real Arguments, a Little History, and Some Humour (Broadview, 2017)— 2nd (retitled) edition of my Natural DeductionAdopt it for your classes, or buy it to learn logic on your own! It’s inexpensive for a logic text (~$40), and perfect preparation for LSAT, etc.!

For the general reader, I recommend my Leibniz, (Polity Press, 2014), where I give a fresh overview of the great German polymath's thought, with emphasis both on its roots and its contemporary scientific and philosophical relevance.



I have been invited as a speaker and given numerous talks around the globe during the year or so before Covid—including Prague, Toronto, Paris, Harvard, Chapman and Riverside, CA, and have given several talks on Zoom since. See conferences and latest news for details. See also my interview with 3:16 a.m. Heavy bedtime reading!

"Many other things I long to be at, but I do extremely want time." --Robert Hooke, 3 Sept 1667

© Richard TW Arthur 2016