Tammy Marie Nyden F'08

Tammy Marie Nyden
Assistant Professor
Philosophy
Grinnell College

ACLS Fellowship Program 2008
Assistant Professor
Philosophy
Grinnell College
De Volder and the New Physics at the University of Leiden

Burchard de Volder was the first physics professor to introduce experimental methodologies to the university classroom. The fact that he did so at the University of Leiden, one of the most important institutions in seventeenth-century scientific education, made him largely responsible for the dissemination and acceptance of Newtonian physics. This study examines the institutional and cultural conditions that fostered De Volder’s commitment to experiment in both his philosophy and pedagogy. This project examines De Volder’s writings and correspondence, records of his teaching methods and lectures, and primary and secondary material on the teaching and reception of the new physics in Leiden.