All That is Possible Can Be Imagined: Leibniz's "Von der Allmacht"
Picone, Maria S.
Kulstad, Mark A.
Master of Arts
Leibniz's 'Von der Allmacht and Allwissenheit Gottes and der Freiheit des Mensched is obscure and misunderstood. First I do a close reading of the work. Then I will discuss some scholarly interpretations, as well as VdA's place in Leibniz's thought. I challenge two scholarly assumptions--the first being that Leibniz rejected then accepted privation theory. I argue that there are two types of privation theories, using illustrative historical examples, and that Leibniz objected to one and adopted the other. Secondly, many scholars opine that the Confessio is a juvenile Theodicy. I take VdA to be an important predecessor to the Theodicy due to similarities in style, content and method. Finally, I link Leibniz's definition of possibility in VdA with an important connection between truth and existence. In this respect, Leibniz's ideas of possibility and conceivability are the forerunners of a current topic in philosophy.