Dialogue

Articles

La réforme du mécanisme, ou le «rêve» d'Henri Bergson

François Molla1

a1 Université de Provence (Aix-en-Provence)

ABSTRACT

When it comes to explaining life and living organisms, it is as insufficient to see in Descartes a proponent of radical mechanicism (the human body is not any sort of body since it is united with a soul) and in Kant a proponent of radical finalism (in biology, scientific explanations are in the last resort mechanicist), as it is to see in Bergson nothing other than an opponent of mechanicism. In fact in Creative Evolution Bergson “dreams” of a “mechanism of transformation” that should consist of a reform of mechanicism, the conditions of possibility of which are based not only on the progress of chemistry, but first of all on the progress of mathematics, and more precisely of infinitesimal calculus, the only method able to objectively grasp movement.