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High Road to Culture in Flanders and the Netherlands

Spinoza and the Golden Age of the Dutch Republic
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Spinoza and the Golden Age of the Dutch Republic

(Wiep van Bunge) The Low Countries - 1994, № 2, pp. 43-51

This is an article from our print archives

One of the most important propositions in Spinoza's Ethics is this: ‘In nature there is nothing contingent, but all things have been determined from the necessity of the divine nature to exist and produce an effect in a certain way.' You do not need to be a Spinozist to see how the Golden Age of the Dutch Republic at the very least made Spinoza possible. The Republic did that by giving space to outsiders, to fringe figures, to minorities. And you need not go looking for the relevance of the past in order to find it.

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