Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 10-22-2015




Bayle produces a set of three criteria to evaluate views of non-human animal souls. These criteria arise from Bayle’s interaction with the extant Modern views on the topic and are meant to capture features that any successful view will have. Bayle criticizes Leibniz’s view of animal souls at length for its reliance on the theory of pre-established harmony, entering into a long exchange with Leibniz on the topic, but Bayle never explicitly applies his criteria. This leads some (including Leibniz) to conclude that Bayle thinks Leibniz’s view satisfies the criteria. I argue in this paper that Leibniz’s view properly satisfies at most one of Bayle three criteria, but that this examination shows a deep tension between two of those criteria.


This article was originally published in Lo Sguardo - rivista di filosofia N. 18, 2015 (II) - Confini animali dell’anima umana. Prospettive e problematiche , the definitive version is available on the publisher's website .