Aristotle's Dialectic, Refutation, and Inquiry

Dialogue 21 (1):79-94 (1982)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

The last half-century has witnessed a resurgence of interest in Aristotle's Topics and his theory of dialectic—culminating in J. D. G. Evan's book about Aristotle's concept of dialectic; the decision to devote the entire Third Symposium Aristotelicum to the Topics; and the appearance of a small but steady stream of articles, several of which are now conveniently bound together in the first volume of Articles on Aristotle, edited by Barnes, Schofield, and Sorabji. These studies provide two somewhat incompatible views of Aristotle's dialectic. On the one hand, it is argued that dialectic—as a method parallel but inferior to demonstration—was superseded by the discovery of the scientific method, or that dialectic—as a method of discussing first principles and of eliciting assent during debate—is at best a propadeutic to philosophic inquiry. These assessments are a consequence of the view that, what ever its strengths, dialectic can never transcend the level of opinion with which it begins, so as to achieve knowledge or certainty. At the other side of the spectrum are those who maintain that in addition t o having nonphilosophic uses, for Aristotle dialectical inquiry is often an integral part of philosophic investigation and, on occasion, its most important part. To some, dialectic's role in philosophic investigation is limited to the verification of definitions already discovered and to bringing an investigator to the threshold of discovering first principles, to others, dialectic's last stage comprises part of the philosophic discovery itself.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 74,466

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Aristotle and a Refutation of Naturalism.Eugene E. Ryan - 1972 - Journal of Value Inquiry 6 (3):221-225.
Aristotle's Refutation of the Universal Good.Dale Jacquette - 1998 - Journal of Value Inquiry 32 (3):301-324.
Is Hegel's Master–Slave Dialectic a Refutation of Solipsism?Robert Stern - 2012 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 20 (2):333-361.

Analytics

Added to PP
2010-09-25

Downloads
27 (#427,939)

6 months
1 (#417,474)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Miriam Galston
George Washington University

Citations of this work

Endoxa and Epistemology in Aristotle’s Topics.Joseph Bjelde - 2021 - In Joseph Andrew Bjelde, David Merry & Christopher Roser (eds.), Essays on Argumentation in Antiquity. Cham: Springer. pp. 201-214.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Aristotle.W. Ross - 1925 - Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale 32 (1):10-11.
La place de la logique dans la pensée aristotélicienne.Eric Weil - 1951 - Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale 56 (3):283 - 315.

Add more references