Aristotle's study of the natural world plays a tremendously important part in his philosophical thought. He was very interested in the phenomena of motion, causation, place and time, and teleology, and his theoretical materials in this area are collected in his Physics, a treatise of eight books which has been very influential on later thinkers. This volume of new essays provides cutting-edge research on Aristotle's Physics, taking into account recent changes in the field of Aristotle in terms of its understanding (...) of key concepts and preferred methodology. The contributions reassess the key concepts of the treatise, reconstruct Aristotle's methods for the study of nature, and determine the boundaries of his natural philosophy. Due to the foundational nature of Aristotle's Physics itself, the volume will be a must-read for all scholars working on Aristotle. (shrink)
This book discusses Aristotle's biological views about 'natural character traits' and their importance for moral development. It provides a new, comprehensive account of the physiological underpinnings of moral development and shows that the biological account of natural character provides the conceptual and ideological foundation for Aristotle's ethical views about habituation.
In Aristotle's teleological view of the world, natural things come to be and are present for the sake of some function or end. Whereas much of recent scholarship has focused on uncovering the physical underpinnings of Aristotle's teleology and its contrasts with his notions of chance and necessity, this book examines Aristotle's use of the theory of natural teleology in producing explanations of natural phenomena. Close analyses of Aristotle's natural treatises and his Posterior Analytics show what methods are used for (...) the discovery of functions or ends that figure in teleological explanations, how these explanations are structured, and how well they work in making sense of phenomena. The book will be valuable for all who are interested in Aristotle's natural science, his philosophy of science, and his biology. (shrink)
Despite the renewed interest in Aristotle’s Generation of Animals in recent years, the subject matter of GA V, its preferred mode(s) of explanation, and its place in the treatise as a whole remain misunderstood. Scholars focus on GA I-IV, which explain animal generation in terms of efficient-final causation, but dismiss GA V as a mere appendix, thinking it to concern (a) individual, accidental differences among animals, which are (b) purely materially necessitated, and (c) are only tangentially related to the topics (...) discussed in the earlier books. In this paper, we defend an alternative and more integrated account of GA V by closely examining Aristotle’s methodological introduction in GA V.1 778a16-b19 and his teleological explanation of the differences of teeth in GA V.8. We argue for the unity of both GA V and of GA as a whole and present a more nuanced theory of teleological explanation in Aristotle’s biology. (shrink)
In this paper, I offer three suggestions regarding the role of Aristotle’s concept of analogy in biology as alternatives to the views defended by Devin Henry. First, I argue that the concept of analogy in Aristotle’s biological treatises points to a similarity in capacity between parts. Second, that it is mostly of methodological importance for the practice of explanation rather than for the practice of classification. And finally, that it is used with regard to parts that are visibly different and (...) incommensurate rather to parts that possess different material natures. (shrink)
It is a commonplace in Aristotelian scholarship that the forms of living beings and the animal species to which they give rise are “fixed.” However, Aristotle’s biological works often stress the flexibility of nature during the development of animals. The purpose of this paper is twofold: first, to delineate the range of flexibility that Aristotle takes natures to have in the design of animals; and second, to draw out the implications of this for Aristotle’s embryology and theory of natural teleology.
Es ist ein zentraler Grundsatz der aristotelischen Naturphilosophie, dass die Natur stets um eines bestimmten Zweckes willen tätig ist: Jedes Ding, das von Natur aus besteht, sich verändert oder entsteht, tut dies – solange es nicht daran gehindert wird – um eines bestimmten Zweckes bzw. um einer bestimmten Funktion willen. In diesem Zweck bzw. in dieser Funktion besteht die Zweck- oder auch Finalursache des Dinges, welches dann seinerseits die Vermögen, Struktur und Teile, die es besitzt, um willen der Zweckursache besitzt. (...) In der modernen Literatur nennt man diesen aristotelischen Grundsatz von der Zweckorientiertheit des Natürlichen Aristoteles’ Lehre von der natürlichen Teleologie. Es ist allerdings wichtig, sich klarzumachen, dass der Ausdruck ›Teleologie‹ erst im 18. Jh. durch den deutschen Philosophen Christian Wolff geprägt wurde. (shrink)
As the editors of this excellent little volume point out from the outset, Aristotleâs Physics VII.3 is a curious, difficult, andâsadlyâmostly neglected chapter. On the one hand, the chapter discusses quite important matters. Offering one of the lengthiest discussions of qualitative change in the Aristotelian corpus, it starts out by restricting this type of changeânot to changes in any of the four types of quality Aristotle had distinguished in Categories 8âbut to change in perceptual qualities only . It then proceeds (...) by demonstrating that two seeming counterexamples to this refined notion of qualitative changeânamely, items taking on figures or shapes, and the taking on and casting off of states âare not in fact cases of qualitative change, even if their occurrence depends on qualitative changes taking place in something else. In the meantime, it offers a rare physiological account of the acquisition and loss of the ethical and intellectual virtues, thereby making the chapter not only crucial for our understanding of Aristotleâs physics and metaphysics but also for his moral psychology and ethics. On the other hand, the chapter is demanding, does not seem to fit in well within the argument of Physics VII as a whole , and the Greek has been handed down to us in two different versions. (shrink)
While Aristotle is mostly famous as the father of natural teleology, De Groot sets out to offer us a picture of the “other,” hitherto neglected Aristotle, whose natural science is thoroughly influenced by mechanistic procedures and ideas. Her monograph is impressive: it provides a wealth of detailed and philosophically rich discussions of sometimes overlooked Aristotelian texts, diagrams, and tables that help visualize the often technical materials she discusses, and bold and original claims that will perhaps not convince everyone, but that (...) will need to be taken into account in future studies of Aristotle’s natural philosophy. By drawing attention to the operation of mechanical notions... (shrink)
This volume collects Late Ancient, Byzantine and Medieval appropriations of Aristotle's Posterior Analytics, addressing the logic of inquiry, concept formation, the question whether metaphysics is a science, and the theory of demonstration.
Jan WoleĔski Kazimierz Twardowski and the Development of Philosophy of Science in Poland Kazimierz Twardowski studied with Brentano and followed his style of doing philosophy, in particular, the thesis that the method of philosophy is ...
In this book, a general type ontology of works is defended and developed in detail. A wide concept of “work” is used here, such that “work” roughly corresponds to “artefact”. Though the focus is on works of art, the theory is meant to be applicable, in principle, to works of science and technology and to everyday items of all sorts as well. Among others, the following questions are discussed: To what ontological category or categories do works belong? Is there a (...) principled ontological divide between linguistic and musical works, on the one hand, and works of the visual arts on the other? What is the relationship between works and such diverse things as performances, manuscripts, scores, blueprints, stagings, film screenings, printing plates, data carriers, and others? What is the relationship between works and interpretations? In what way do works come into existence? Can works, once they are finished, be changed and/or cease to exist, and if so, under what conditions? Which sorts of parts can be distinguished within a work? Is the context of origin constitutive of a work’s identity? Can a translation be identical with the original linguistic work? Who is the author of a computer-generated work? The central thesis is that works of all kinds are abstract artefacts, i. e., types that are instantiated in concrete particulars, that is, in material or mental objects and events. The relationship between works and their “realizations” is defined by means of a modes of predication distinction, as it is used in a variety of Meinongian logics. An extensive chapter is dedicated to the relation between “representing works” and their represented worlds, with a focus on fictitious worlds and their objects. The latter are modeled as parts of fictional works. (shrink)
Dieses Buch ist eine bewusst systematisch orientierte Einführung in die grundlegendsten Fragen der philosophischen Ästhetik. Es richtet sich in erster Linie an Studierende der Philosophie, aber auch an interessierte Laien und Vertreter/innen anderer Disziplinen. Zusammenfassungen, Übungsaufgaben und Literaturhinweise am Ende jedes Kapitels machen es auch für das Selbststudium geeignet. Aus dem Inhalt: I. Was ist philosophische Ästhetik? – Auf der Suche nach einer Definition der philosophischen Ästhetik – Die Gegenstände der philosophischen Ästhetik – Die Fragen der philosophischen Ästhetik – Die (...) Methoden der philosophischen Ästhetik II. Das ästhetische Erlebnis und die ästhetische Einstellung – Die Bestandteile ästhetischer Erlebnisse – Die subjektive und die objektive Erklärung der ästhetischen Erfahrung – Interesselosigkeit und psychische Distanz – Einwände gegen die Theorie der Interesselosigkeit und der psychischen Distanz III. Ästhetische Eigenschaften, ästhetische Werturteile und ästhetische Gegenstände – Ästhetische Eigenschaften und ästhetische Prädikate – Ästhetischer Realismus versus ästhetischer Anti-Realismus – Nonkognitivismus, Subjektivismus, Naturalismus – Das Erkennen ästhetischer Wertqualitäten IV. Die Ontologie des Kunstwerks – Was für eine Art von Gegenständen sind Kunstwerke? – Die Abstraktheit literarischer und musikalischer Werke – Sind Werke der bildenden Kunst materielle Gegenstände? – Fiktive Gegenstände und dargestellte Welten V. Was ist Kunst? – Die Darstellungstheorie – Die Ausdruckstheorie – Der kunstästhetische Formalismus – Die Institutionstheorie – Die Theorie der Familienähnlichkeit – Kunst als ästhetische Kommunikation. (shrink)
States of affairs raise, among others, the following questions: What kind of entity are they (if there are any)? Are they contingent, causally efficacious, spatio-temporal and perceivable entities, or are they abstract objects? What are their constituents and their identity conditions? What are the functions that states of affairs are able to fulfil in a viable theory, and which problems and prima facie counterintuitive consequences arise out of an ontological commitment to them? Are there merely possible (non-actual, non-obtaining) states of (...) affairs? Are there molecular (i.e., negative, conjunctive, disjunctive etc.) states of affairs? Are there modal and tensed states of affairs? In this volume, these and other questions are addressed by David M. Armstrong, Marian David, Herbert Hochberg, Uwe Meixner, L. Nathan Oaklander, Peter Simons, Erwin Tegtmeier and Mark Textor. (shrink)
A continuing need for care for elderly, combined with looser family structures prompt the question what filial obligations are. Do adult children of elderly have a duty to care? Several theories of filial obligation are reviewed. The reciprocity argument is not sensitive to the parent–child relationship after childhood. A theory of friendship does not offer a correct parallel for the relationship between adult child and elderly parent. Arguments based on need or vulnerability run the risk of being unjust to those (...) on whom a needs-based claim is laid. To compare filial obligations with promises makes too much of parents’ expectations, however reasonable they may be. The good of being in an unchosen relationship seems the best basis for filial obligations, with an according duty to maintain the relationship when possible. We suggest this relationship should be maintained even if one of the parties is no longer capable of consciously contributing to it. We argue that this entails a duty to care about one’s parents, not for one’s parents. This implies that care for the elderly is not in the first place a task for adult children. (shrink)
In her new book, Leunissen, author of Explanation and Teleology in Aristotle's Science of Nature, turns her expertise in Aristotle's biology to the issue of virtue of character. The book contains some fascinating material from Aristotle's biological works and also material from relatively neglected parts of the Politics, including discussions of ethnography, climate, physiognomy, and "eugenics." Leunissen's thesis is that an examination of this material will provide insight into how people become morally virtuous, and especially why Aristotle excludes (...) women from this group.Leunissen suggests that it is Aristotle's biology that leads to his views about women, but that does not exclude the possibility of the... (shrink)
In the last decades an increasing interest in everyday life in Byzantium has been manifested, not the least stimulated by the Birmingham Spring Symposia. Official and private collections have been brought to light. Maria PARANI has ventured to write a study not only about official and everyday furniture and implements but in the same work about the transmission of imperial insignia to the ecclesiastical realm. This work is an impressive scholarly accomplishment, written with much enthusiasm with beautiful layout and (...) excellent quality of the illustrations. (shrink)
ABSTRACT. In this paper, I defend a strong version of actual intentionalism. First, I argue against meaning subjectivism, conventionalism and contextualism. Second, I discuss what I take to be the most important rival to actual intentionalism, namely hypothetical intentionalism. I argue that, although hypothetical intentionalism might be acceptable as a definition of the concept of utterance meaning, it does not provide an acceptable answer to the question of what determines an utterance’s meaning. Third, I deal with the most serious objection (...) against actual intentionalism, namely the failure objection. I argue that the failure objection can be overcome within a framework of full-blown actual intentionalism if one distinguishes between categorial and semantic intentions. Moreover, I show how this version of actual intentionalism accounts for the possibility of innovative metaphors and other implicatures. Finally, I demonstrate that actual intentionalism – thus construed – makes it possible to distinguish between communicative failures and the intentional breaking of conventions. (shrink)