Primary Research Areas
Early Modern Philosophy, Harvey and early modern Aristotelianism, and the rationalists (Descartes, Malebranche, Leibniz, etc )
History and Philosophy of Science, esp. theories of explanation, function and teleology
History of Science and Medicine, especially  Early Modern (e.g., Regnier de Graaf)

Secondary Research Areas

Aristotle's biology
Galen and Ancient medicine
History of Biology and Geology, esp. Darwin and early modern English naturalists (e.g., John Ray)
History of Philosophy
Feminist Philosophy of Science


1. Goldberg, Benjamin and Peter Distelzweig and Evan Ragland (Eds.) (2016), Early Modern Medicine and Natural Philosophy. Springer.


1. Goldberg, Benjamin (2013). “A Dark Business, full of shadows: Analogy and theology in William Harvey” Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44, 419–432. A pdf version can be downloaded here.

2. Goldberg, Benjamin and Peter Distelzweig and Evan Ragland (2016). “Introduction.” In: Know Thyself: Early Modern Medicine and Philosophy, Springer.

3. Goldberg, Benjamin (Forthcoming). “William Harvey on Anatomy and Experience.” Perspectives on Science, 24:3. A pdf version can be downloaded here.

4. Goldberg, Benjamin (Forthcoming). “Anatomy as a Science of Teleology: The Case of William Harvey,” In: Interpretations of Life in Heaven and Earth, Ed. Hiro Hirai, Springer. A pdf version can be downloaded here.

5. Goldberg, Benjamin (Forthcoming). “Underdetermination and Explanation in William Harvey’s Rejection of Materialism,” In: Eppur si muove: Doing Philosophy of Science with Peter Machamer, Eds. Marcus Adams, Zvi Biener, and Uljana Feest. Springer.   

6. Goldberg, Benjamin (Forthcoming). “On the Study of Medicine and Philosophy in the Renaissance.” Introduction for: Academic Theories of Generation in the Renaissance: The Contemporaries and Successors of Jean Fernel, Linda Deer Richardson, Springer (under contract).


1. Goldberg, Benjamin (2011). "Review of Lisa T. Sarasohn, The Natural Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish: Reason and Fancy During the Scientific Revolution (Johns Hopkins, 2010)," History of Philosophy of Science 1(1), 169-172.

2. Goldberg, Benjamin and Charles Wolfe (2012). “Review of Luuc Kooijmans, Death Defied: The Anatomy Lessons of Frederik Ruysch, Translated by Diane Webb (Brill, 2011),” History of Philosophy of Science, 2(2).

3. Goldberg, Benjamin and Peter Machamer (2013). “Review of Marcelo Dascal and Victor D. Boantza, editors, Controversies within the Scientific Revolution (John Benjamins Publishing Company 2011),” Isis 104(2), 394-395.

4. Goldberg, Benjamin (2013), “Review of Stuart Peterfreund, Turning Points in Natural Theology from Bacon to Darwin (Palgrave Macmillan 2012)," Renaissance Quarterly, 66(2), 643-645.


"William Harvey, Soul Searcher: Teleology and Philosophical Anatomy"
My dissertation focuses on Harvey's philosophical anatomy and the role of teleology and teleological concepts (most importantly the soul (anima)) in both his conception of the subject matter of anatomy, and in his account of proper anatomical method.

For a copy of my dissertation, please send me an email.
For an overview and abstract of the dissertation please see my dissertation summary.

Invited Lectures

1. "From Descartes to Voltaire." Invited lecture for: Introduction to Western Thought (Prof. Jeffery Kleiman), University of Wisconsin-Marshfield, November 10 2005.

2. “Physicians and Philosophers.” Invited Lecture for: Modern Philosophy Seminar (Prof. Justin Sytsma), East Tennessee State University, March 16, 2011.

3. “What is Disease?” Invited Lecture for: the Kingsport Alliance for Continued Learning, April 11, 2013.

4. “Lessons from the History of Medicine.” Invited Lecture for: Resident Wellbeing Committee, Marshfield Clinic. Projected Fall 2015.

Talks and Presentations

1. “Early Modern Reproductive Anatomy and the One-Sex Model: A Case Study of the work of Regnier de Graaf.” The Joint Atlantic Seminar in the History of Biology (Johns Hopkins), March 24- March 25, 2006.

2. “Regnier de Graaf on the Generative Organs.”  Given at: Canadian Society for History and Philosophy of Science (York University, Canada), May 29- May 31, 2006.

3. “Regnier de Graaf’s Work on Sexual Anatomy.” Poster Presentation.  Given at: Society for the Social History of Medicine Conference (University of Warwick, UK), June 28 – June 30, 2006

4. “The Power of God and the Power of Man: Regnier de Graaf and the Construction of Women’s Bodies.”  Given at: the American Historical Association Annual Meeting (Atlanta, GA), January 4-7, 2007.

5. “Explanatory Language in Darwin’s Origin.”  Given at: Understanding and Explanation: Ninth Annual Pitt/CMU Graduate Philosophy Conference (Carnegie Mellon University), March 24, 2007.

6. “Leibniz, Mechanisms, and Machines.” Given at: Canadian Society for History and Philosophy of Science (University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada), June 3-5, 2008.

7. “De Generatione and the New Science.” Given at: History of Science Society (Pittsburgh, PA), November 6-9, 2008.

8. “Ex Naturae Declarabimus: William Harvey and Natural Theology.”  Given at: History of Science Society (Phoenix, AZ), November 19-22, 2009.

9. “Generation as Disease, Generation as Idea: William Harvey on the Generation of Animals.” Given at: More Too Funky Causation Seminar (Department of Philosophy and Moral Sciences, Ghent University, Belgium), February 23-24, 2011.

10. “What the Heck is the Regula Socratis?” Given at: East Tennessee State University Early Modern Philosophy Colloquium, March 18, 2011.

11. “The Soul Unfolding.” Given at: University of Pittsburgh, Early Modern Philosophy and Medicine Workshop, May 27, 2011.

12. “Experientia in William Harvey’s Natural Philosophy.” Given at: Reading Early Modern Studies Conference (University of Reading, UK), June 14, 2012.

13. “Harvey, Humanism, and Eclectic Aristotelianism.” Given at: Aristotelian Natural Philosophy in the Early Modern Period, (Brussels, Belgium), May 24, 2013.

14. “On the Origins of Empirical Philosophy: From Humanism to Harvey,” Given at: Renaissance Humanism (Groningen, Holland), June 15, 2013.

14. “Dignity, Natural Theology, and Epigenesis,” Given at: History of Science Society (Boston), November 22, 2013.

15. "What can Qualitative Methods tell us about Quantitative Methods? Lessons from Historiography,” Given at: Couch Stone Symposium (San Petersburg, FL), March 13, 2015.

© 2008 Benny Goldberg