In J. Rocca (ed.), Teleology in the Ancient World: philosophical and medical approaches. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 125-150 (2017)
AbstractIn some influential histories of ancient philosophy, teleological explanation and mechanistic explanation are assumed to be directly opposed and mutually exclusive alternatives. I contend that this assumption is deeply flawed, and distorts our understanding both of teleological and mechanistic explanation, and of the history of mechanistic philosophy. To prove this point, I shall provide an overview of the first systematic treatise on mechanics, the short and neglected work Mechanical Problems, written either by Aristotle or by a very early member of his school. I will argue that the work is thoroughly Aristotelian in methodology, and that taking it seriously can deepen our understanding of Aristotle’s discussion of animal and human self-motion in the Physics and On the Movement of Animals.
Similar books and articles
Mechanisms and psychological explanation.Cory Wright & William Bechtel - 2007 - In Paul Thagard (ed.), Handbook of the Philosophy of Psychology and Cognitive Science. Elsevier.
Mechanism or Bust? Explanation in Psychology.Lawrence A. Shapiro - 2017 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 68 (4):1037-1059.
II—James Woodward: Mechanistic Explanation: Its Scope and Limits.James Woodward - 2013 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 87 (1):39-65.
Mechanisms are Real and Local.Phyllis McKay Illari & Jon Williamson - 2011 - In Phyllis McKay Illari, Federica Russo & Jon Williamson (eds.), Causality in the Sciences. Oxford University Press.
Mechanistic artefact explanation.Jeroen de Ridder - 2006 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 37 (1):81-96.
One mechanism, many models: a distributed theory of mechanistic explanation.Eric Hochstein - 2016 - Synthese 193 (5):1387-1407.
“Looking Up” and “Looking Down”: On the Dual Character of Mechanistic Explanations.Kari L. Theurer - 2018 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 49 (3):371-392.
The Completeness of Mechanistic Explanations.Tudor M. Baetu - 2015 - Philosophy of Science 82 (5):775-786.
Extended Mechanistic Explanations: Expanding the Current Mechanistic Conception to Include More Complex Biological Systems.Sarah M. Roe & Bert Baumgaertner - 2017 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 48 (4):517-534.
Constraints on Localization and Decomposition as Explanatory Strategies in the Biological Sciences.Michael Silberstein & Anthony Chemero - 2013 - Philosophy of Science 80 (5):958-970.
Mechanistic explanation in engineering science.Dingmar van Eck - 2015 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 5 (3):349-375.
Added to PP
Historical graph of downloads
Citations of this work
Animism and natural teleology from Avicenna to Boyle.Jeff Kochan - 2021 - Science in Context 34 (1):1-23.
Aristotle’s New Clothes: Mechanistic Readings of the Master Teleologist.Sylvia Berryman - 2022 - Apeiron 55 (4):537-555.
Liberal Naturalism and Non-epistemic Values.Ricardo F. Crespo - 2019 - Foundations of Science 24 (2):247-273.
References found in this work
No references found.