Francis Bacon’S Qualification as The Father of Modern Philosophy
The purpose of this paper is to determine if there is any basis for regarding Francis Bacon as the father of Modern Philosophy. This involves effort to determine what constitutes, in essence, Modern Philosophy and the goal of Modern Philosophy. Are there criteria that qualify one as the father of Modern Philosophy? Proceeding with this inquiry, our paper examines, on the one hand, the views of those who argue in defence of Bacon’s qualification as the father of Modern Philosophy. Here it is argued that “if Modern Philosophy is, however, understood as beginning from the Renaissance period, it seems more appropriate to regard Francis Bacon as the father of Modern Philosophy” (Omoregbe, 1991, p.v). On the part of those opposed to Bacon’s qualification as the father of Modern Philosophy, it is argued that “Descartes is called the father of Modern Philosophy…. This title of the father of Modern Philosophy has been disputed in favour of Francis Bacon. As Descartes’ reputation rose, that of Bacon fell” (Ozumba 2005, p.146). After a critical examination of the above views, amongst others, we discovered that the major task of Modern Philosophy is getting certainty in knowledge. Bacon did not tackle this question of certainty in knowledge. Perhaps Bacon equated knowledge with certainty. But Descartes tackled this question of certainty in knowledge and reached a foundation (foundationalism) for certainty. And it was on this foundation that Modern Philosophy was built. The above views, among others, strongly question Bacon’s qualification as the father of Modern Philosophy. Our paper, therefore, argues that it is more appropriate to regard Descartes as the father of Modern Philosophy.
Key words: Father; Modern Philosophy; Certainty inKnowledge
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