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Du Châtelet Project

Émilie Du Châtelet is a major figure of the early French Enlightenment, and the Institutions de Physique of 1740 is her main original contribution to philosophy. This text has never received a full English translation, or been read in any depth as a philosophical text. Our research project involves doing both.

(Click here for our translations)

In 2009, Isabelle Bour and Judith Zinsser published a partial translation of the Foundations in 
their collection of Du Châtelet's Selected Philosophical and Scientific Writings (The University of Chicago
Press). In 2014, Lydia Patton published her translation of Chapter 9, in her Philosophy, Science, and
History: A Guide and Reader
 (Routledge). The Notre Dame group has translated the remaining chapters,
and these are available here. We are grateful to Penelope Brading for her assistance with the translation
and her copy-editing in support of this project.

Research Activites: 

The translation project is now complete.

Follow the links on this website for my papers and books on Du Châtelet. 



Conference celebrating the complete translation.

University of Notre Dame, April 2018.

See here for more information.

This was the culmination of the Notre Dame project, other activities associated with which are listed below:


HOPOS, Minneapolis, July 2016.
Conference paper, Du Châtelet on Scientific Methodology, Katherine Brading.

Exploring the Philosophy of Émilie Du Châtelet. Conference at Columbia University, June 2016.
Du Châtelet on Scientific Methodology, Katherine Brading.

New Narratives in Philosophy, NEH sponsored conference at Duke University, April 2016.
Conference paper on Du Châtelet given by Katherine Brading.

Early Modern Women on Science, Metaphysics and Religion, Groningen, March 2016.

Conference papers on Du Châtelet given by Katherine Brading and Aaron Wells.

UC Davis, March 2016.
Philosophy department talk, Émilie Du Châtelet and the foundations of physical science, Katherine Brading. See here.

EPSA, Düsseldorf, September 2015.
Symposium: Émilie Du Châtelet's Institutions de Physique

Jamee Elder, Monica Solomon, John Hanson, Jeremy Steeger, and Aaron Wells.

BSPS, Manchester, July 2015.
Plenary lecture, Émilie Du Châtelet and the foundations of physical science, Katherine Brading. See

Oxford workshop on Du Châtelet, May 2015.

"Reading the Institutions de Physiques a philosophical text: content and context in relation to the Encyclopédie". See here.

Notre Dame workshop on Du Châtelet, April 2015.

We are collaborating with Andrew Janiak and Karen Detlefsen, who are working on a major ACLS-funded project on Du Châtelet's philosophy.


For more about Du Châtelet's philosophy online, see also:

People Involved

Katherine Brading

Jamee Elder

Ashton Green

John Hanson

Lauren Montes

Anne Seul
Phillip R. Sloan

Monica Solomon

Jeremy Steeger

Aaron Wells

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