Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Manuscrito]]> vol. 42 num. 4 lang. pt <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[ARISTOTLE’S THEORY OF DEMONSTRATION AND ITS LOGICAL AND METAPHYSICAL ENTANGLEMENTS]]> <![CDATA[THEORETICAL NOUS IN THE POSTERIOR ANALYTICS]]> Abstract According to Aristotle's definition of episteme (understanding) in the Posterior Analytics, you have episteme of the proposition that P when you know why P, and you know that it is necessary that P. Episteme is therefore only available for propositions which have an explanation, i.e. the theorems of the science. It is a demanding cognitive state, since knowing the explanation of a proposition in a science requires being able to demonstrate or prove it. Aristotle occasionally refers to the counterpart notion to episteme which applies to propositions which lack an explanation, i.e. the first principles of a science. This counterpart notion is nous, or non-demonstrative understanding. Aristotle never defines it, but it should turn out to be an equally demanding cognitive state to achieve. This paper proposes that you have nous of the proposition that P when you know that nothing explains why P, you know the various ways in which the proposition that P features in explanations in the science, and you know that it is necessary that P. <![CDATA[KATH’ HAUTA PREDICATES AND THE ‘COMMENSURATE UNIVERSALS’]]> Abstract What lies behind Aristotle’s declarations that an attribute or feature that is demonstrated to belong to a scientific subject is proper to that subject? The answer is found in APo. 2.8-10, if we understand these chapters as bearing not only on Aristotle theory of definition but also as clarifying the logical structure of demonstration in general. If we identify the basic subjects with what has no different cause, and demonstrable attributes (the kath’ hauta sumbebēkota) with what do have ‘a different cause’, the definitions of demonstrable attributes necessarily have the minor terms of the appropriate demonstrations in their definitions, for which reason the subjects and demonstrable attributes are coextensive. <![CDATA[ARISTOTLE ON PREDICATION AND DEMONSTRATION]]> Abstract I argue against the standard interpretation of Aristotle’s account of ‘natural predication’ in Posterior Analytics 1.19 and 1.22 according to which only substances can serve as subjects in such predications. I argue that this interpretation cannot accommodate a number of demonstrations Aristotle sanctions. I propose a new interpretation that can accommodate them. <![CDATA[AVOIDING INFINITE REGRESS: POSTERIOR ANALYTICS I 22]]> Abstract This article offers a reconstruction of an argument against infinite regress formulated by Aristotle in Posterior Analytics I 22. I argue against the traditional interpretation of the chapter, according to which singular terms and summa genera, in virtue of having restrict logical roles, provide limits for predicative chains, preventing them from proceeding ad infinitum. As I intend to show, this traditional reading is at odds with some important aspects of Aristotle’s theory of demonstration. More importantly, it fails to explain how his proof is connected to a defence of the existence of ultimate explanations, a connection that must be the case if I 19-22 is advancing a foundationalist way-out to a sceptical challenge raised in I 3. <![CDATA[ARISTOTLE’S CONTRAST BETWEEN <em>EPISTEME</em> AND <em>DOXA</em> IN ITS CONTEXT (POSTERIOR ANALYTICS I.33)]]> Abstract Aristotle contrasts episteme and doxa through the key notions of universal and necessary. These notions have played a central role in Aristotle’s characterization of scientific knowledge in the previous chapters of APo. They are not spelled out in APo I.33, but work as a sort of reminder that packs an adequate characterization of scientific knowledge and thereby gives a highly specified context for Aristotle’s contrast between episteme and doxa. I will try to show that this context introduces a contrast in terms of explanatory claims: on the one hand, episteme covers those claims which capture explanatory connections that are universal and necessary and thereby deliver scientific understanding; on the other hand, doxa covers the explanatory attempts that fail at doing so. <![CDATA[SYLLOGISMS AND EXISTENCE IN ARISTOTLE’S POSTERIOR ANALYTICS]]> Abstract In this paper I examine how Aristotle thinks syllogisms establish existence. I argue against the traditional "Instantiation" reading and in favor of an alternative "causal" or "structural" account of existential syllogisms. On my interpretation, syllogisms establish the existence of kinds by revealing that they are per se unities whose features are causally underwritten by a single cause/essence. They do so by tracing correlations between propria--peculiar, coextensive features--of the kind in question. <![CDATA[DISENTANGLING DEFINING AND DEMONSTRATING: NOTES ON <em>AN. POST</em>. II 3-7]]> Abstract: In APo II 3-7 Aristotle discusses a series of difficulties concerning definition, deduction, and demonstration. In this paper I focus on two interrelated but distinct questions: firstly, what are exactly the difficulties emerging from or alluded to in the discussion in II 3-7; secondly, whether and in what sense the discussion in II 3-7 can be considered an aporetic discussion with a specific role to play in the development of the argument in APo II. <![CDATA[<strong>MATERIAL CAUSE AND SYLLOGISTIC NECESSITY IN <em>POSTERIOR ANALYTICS</em> II 11</strong>]]> Abstract The paper examines Posterior Analytics II 11, 94a20-36 and makes three points. (1) The confusing formula ‘given what things, is it necessary for this to be’ [τίνων ὄντων ἀνάγκη τοῦτ᾿ εἶναι] at a21-22 introduces material cause, not syllogistic necessity. (2) When biological material necessitation is the only causal factor, Aristotle is reluctant to formalize it in syllogistic terms, and this helps to explain why, in II 11, he turns to geometry in order to illustrate a kind of material cause that can be expressed as the middle term of an explanatory syllogism. (3) If geometrical proof is viewed as a complex construction built on simpler constructions, it can in effect be described as a case of purely material constitution. <![CDATA[POSTERIOR ANALYTICS II.11, 94b8-26: FINAL CAUSE AND DEMONSTRATION]]> Abstract I present the text at Posterior Analytics (=APo) II.11, 94b8-26, offer a tentative translation, discuss the main construals offered in the literature, and argue for my own interpretation. Some of the general questions I discuss are the following: 1. What is the nature of the explanatory syllogisms offered as examples, especially in the case of the moving and the final cause? Are they scientific demonstrative explanations? In the case of the final cause, are they practical syllogisms? Are they productive? 2. Are we to read into such examples Aristotle’s requirements from APo I.4-6 that demonstrative premisses and conclusions are universal, per se, and necessary? If so, in what way? If such requirements do not apply here, what are the implications for question 1? 3. What, if any, is the advantage of one type of causal explanation over another (e.g., of final over efficient) in cases in which there is causal competition between complementary explanations? 4. What is the relation between the thesis of this chapter, especially the section dedicated to the final cause, and the argument of II.8-10? How is essence (the what-it-is) related to causes? How is explanation/demonstration-based definition related to causal explanation in terms of the four causes? <![CDATA[TELEOLOGY OF THE PRACTICAL IN ARISTOTLE: THE MEANING OF “ΠΡAΞΙΣ”]]> Abstract I show that in his De motu animalium Aristoteles proposes a teleology of the practical on the most general zoological level, i.e. on the level common to humans and self-moving animals. A teleology of the practical is a teleological account of the highest practical goals of animal and human self-motion. I argue that Aristotle conceives of such highest practical goals as goals that are contingently related to their realizations. Animal and human self-motion is the kind of action in which certain state of affairs that realize values are mechanized. <![CDATA[The aporia of ἢ ἐϰ παντὸς in <em>Posterior Analytics</em> II.19]]> Abstract This article sketches, and works to motivate, a controversial approach to Posterior Analytics II.19. But its primary goal is to recommend a novel solution to one particular interpretive aporia that’s especially vexed recent scholars working on Post. An. II.19. The aporia concerns how to understand the enigmatic ē ek pantos... (≈ “or from all...”) in the genealogical account of foundational knowledge at II.19 100a3-9. Our proposed solution to the aporia is discussed in connection with a number of larger philosophical issues concerning Aristotle’s theory of epistē mē. <![CDATA[ARISTOTLE ON PHAINOMENAL COGNITION: ACCESSIBILITY AND EPISTEMOLOGICAL LIMITATION<sup>*</sup>]]> Abstract According to Aristotle, phainomena or “appearances” provide the basis from which researches proceed. This shows that in spite of phainomena often corresponding to what falsely appears to be the case, there is genuine cognition through them. In this paper, I focus on two features of phainomenal cognition: accessibility and epistemological limitation. A phainomenal cognition of x is limited in the sense that there is always a stronger cognition of x to be attained. In this way, a research always aims at surpassing the phainomenal cognition of its subject matter. On the other hand, phainomenal cognition is always somehow accessible. Resorting to the relation between phainomena and the distinction between the more intelligible to us and the more intelligible by nature, I intend to put forward a relative (as opposed to an absolute) understanding of both accessibility and epistemological limitation of phainomena. <![CDATA[CAN THERE BE A SCIENCE OF PSYCHOLOGY? ARISTOTLE’S <em>DE ANIMA</em> AND THE STRUCTURE AND CONSTRUCTION OF SCIENCE]]> Abstract This article considers whether and how there can be for Aristotle a genuine science of ‘pure’ psychology, of the soul as such, which amounts to considering whether Aristotle’s model of science in the Posterior Analytics is applicable to the de Anima. <![CDATA[DEFINITION, EXPLANATION, AND SCIENTIFIC METHOD IN ARISTOTLE’S <em>DE SOMNO</em>]]> Abstract Exploring the systematic connections between Aristotle’s theory and practice of science has emerged as an important concern in recent years. On the one hand, we can invoke the theory of the Posterior Analytics to motivate specific moves that Aristotle makes in the course of his actual investigation of the natural world. On the other, we can use Aristotle’s practice of science to illuminate the theory of the Posterior Analytics, which is presented in a notoriously abstract, and at times also elliptical, way. I would like to contribute to this interpretative tradition with a study of how Aristotle explains the phenomenon of sleep and waking. <![CDATA[ARISTOTLE’S ARGUMENT FROM UNIVERSAL MATHEMATICS AGAINST THE EXISTENCE OF PLATONIC FORMS]]> Abstract In Metaphysics M.2, 1077a9-14, Aristotle appears to argue against the existence of Platonic Forms on the basis of there being certain universal mathematical proofs which are about things that are ‘beyond’ the ordinary objects of mathematics and that cannot be identified with any of these. It is a very effective argument against Platonism, because it provides a counter-example to the core Platonic idea that there are Forms in order to serve as the object of scientific knowledge: the universal of which theorems of universal mathematics are proven in Greek mathematics is neither Quantity in general nor any of the specific quantities, but Quantity-of-type-x. This universal cannot be a Platonic Form, for it is dependent on the types of quantity over which the variable ranges. Since for both Plato and Aristotle the object of scientific knowledge is that F which explains why G holds, as shown in a ‘direct’ proof about an arbitrary F (they merely disagree about the ontological status of this arbitrary F, whether a Form or a particular used in so far as it is F), Plato cannot maintain that Forms must be there as objects of scientific knowledge - unless the mathematics is changed.