Dissertatio 44:187-211 (2016)

Authors
Breno Andrade Zuppolini
Universidade Federal de São Paulo
Abstract
For Aristotle, demonstrative knowledge is the result of what he calls ‘intellectual learning’, a process in which the knowledge of a conclusion depends on previous knowledge of the premises. Since demonstrations are ultimately based on indemonstrable principles (the knowledge of which is called ‘νοῦς’), Aristotle is often described as advancing a foundationalist doctrine. Without disputing the nomenclature, I shall attempt to show that Aristotle’s ‘foundationalism’ should not be taken as a rationalist theory of epistemic justification, as if the first principles of science could be known as such independently of their explanatory connections to demonstrable propositions. I shall argue that knowing first principles as such involves knowing them as explanatory of other scientific propositions. I shall then explain in which way noetic and demonstrative knowledge are in a sense interdependent cognitive states – even though νοῦς remains distinct from (and, in Aristotle’s words, more ‘accurate’ than) demonstrative knowledge.
Keywords Aristotle  Foundationalism  science  Demonstration  Explanation
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DOI 10.15210/dissertatio.v44i0.9366
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References found in this work BETA

Collected Papers.Charles S. Peirce - 1931 - Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
Aristotle's First Principles.Terence Irwin - 1988 - Oxford University Press.
Aristotle’s Definition of Scientific Knowledge.Lucas Angioni - 2016 - History of Philosophy & Logical Analysis 19 (1):79-104.

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