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Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 2
Ancient Greek Philosophy: Pre-Socratic Philosophy

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Displaying: 61-80 of 107 documents


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61. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Antonio Manuel Martins The Principle of Non-contradiction in Metaphysics IV
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In this paper, I wish to take account of the formulation of the PNC in Aristotle (1005b19-20) from a metaphysical point of view. After some comments on the arguments presented in the Aristotelian text, I will briefly discuss: 1) the highly topical principle in metaphysics understood as a ‘four-category ontology’ (Lowe 2005) or newly defined as “the most general attempt to make sense of things” (Moore 2012); 2) the challenge to this principle, coming from the so-called ‘aletheists’ or from ‘Hyper-physics’.
62. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Mieke de Moor Χρόνος in the Biological Works of Aristotle
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In this paper, I would like to consider Aristotle’s concept of time by examining his use of the word χρόνος in the biological works. I defend the thesis that for Aristotle, χρόνος is first and foremost a local biological and physical reality and not a universal mathematical structure. That is to say that in the biological works χρόνος refers to the time of specific movements and functions or biological activities: for example the time of mating, the period of gestation, generation, the periods of celestial movements etc. I will argue that this becomes clear as we examine the semantics of the word χρόνος in his biological works, and especially in the more descriptive works such as History of animals. The larger aim of my paper is to provide elements that shed a new light on Aristotle’s “theory of time” in his Physics (IV, 10-14). I will argue that for Aristotle time is a relative and that, although he states that we can’t attribute velocity to time, his conception is in this respect much more akin to the theory of Einstein than to the conception of Newton. So, I construct and evaluate arguments to sustain the Aristotelian notion of χρόνος as ‘local time’. This important aspect of his theory of time has until now largely been overlooked.
63. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Esra Cagri Mutlu Matter and the Problem of Definition in Aristotle
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Matter is accepted as something unknown in itself, but that does not mean you cannot talk about it. Aristotle believed you can give the description of matter by using analogies. We first come up with the term ‘matter’ in Physics I.7. Aristotle uses it in relation with the problems of change and movement; then in metaphysics it is used in connection with form. Matter and form are accepted as the aspects of the one and same being, in a different level of being though. Because matter is usually associated with potentiality and form is with activity. Therefore, our main problem in this paper is how to make a definition of something and regarding what, that is, to matter or form? Aristotle’s answer for that question will be form because he thought that form is always prior to, and a more real being than matter. We have lots of potentialities throughout our lives, but only some of them are actualized. Thus, if someone wants to make a definition of us, he has to make it in virtue of considering our form.
64. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Imge Oranli Aristotle’s Akrasia: The Role of Potential Knowledge and Practical Syllogism
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In Nicomachean Ethics VII Aristotle describes akrasia as a disposition. Taking into account that it is a disposition, I argue that akrasia cannot be understood on an epistemological basis alone, i.e., it is not merely a problem of knowledge that the akratic person acts the ways he does, but rather one is akratic due to a certain kind of habituation, where the person is not able to activate the potential knowledge s/he possesses. To stress this point, I focus on the gap between potential knowledge and its activation, whereby I argue that the distinction between potential and actual knowledge is at the center of the problem of akrasia. I suggest that to elaborate on this gap, we must go beyond the limits of Nicomachean Ethics to Metaphysics IX, where we find Aristotle’s discussion of the distinction between potentiality and actuality. I further analyze the gap between potential and actual knowledge by means of Aristotle’s discussion of practical syllogism, where I argue that akrasia is a result of a conflict in practical reasoning. I conclude my paper by stressing that for the akratic person the action is determined with respect to the conclusion of the practical syllogism, where the conclusion is produced by means of a ‘conflict’ between the universal opinion which is potential and the particular opinion which is appetitive.
65. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
José Manuel Osorio Plato’s Good in the Phaedo: a New Reading
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In the Phaedo Socrates tells his intellectual biography. He states that in the beginning of his intellectual career he occupied himself with the same causes that the ones of the Pre-Socratics. But this explanation was the root of all sort of philosophical problems so he abandoned it. After this disappointment, Socrates discovered the book of Anaxagoras and he expected there to find that the nous is causa finalis of everything because it is the good. But Anaxagoras never really developed this thought so Socrates pursued a different path: the method of hypothesis and the theory of ideas (the deuteros plous). Is there any trace of the good in the Phaedo? The standard interpretation of the intellectual biography and the deuteros plous passage, where Socrates says he was deprived of it, maintains that there isn’t. Contrary to the standard reading of the text we affirm that the critique that the old Socrates makes against the Pre-Socratics for not taking into consideration the teleological aspect of causality could also be read as an outline of the causal role of the good. This reading allows us to think of a Socrates who is still searching for the good in the deuteros plous account.
66. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Dimitris Papadis Are the Parts of the Soul Three or Nine According to Plato?
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The present paper discusses the question of whether the manifoldness of the soul is restricted to its three known parts or whether those three parts can further be divided into individual parts. According to the Republic 580d7-8 the three parts of the soul correspond to the three kinds of pleasure, so each part of the soul corresponds to its proper pleasure. It is not only the pleasure that is nuanced, according to each part of the soul and its particular nature, but also the spirited (ἐπιθυμίαι) and the rational part (ἀρχαὶ) of the soul are nuanced in the same way. Thus, it becomes clear that each of the three main parts of the soul include three powers: the cognitive, the spirited, and the appetitive, so that we can rightly argue that there are nine powers of the soul in total. This happens because, for example, the cognitive power is as a proper kind a single unified power, but it is also divided in three further powers, according to the particular nature of each of the three main parts of the soul. And, of course, same goes for the other two parts of the soul, the spirited and the appetitive part.
67. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Christos Pechlivanidis Epagōgē, Nous and Phantasia in Aristotle’s Logical System: From Posterior Analytics to De Anima
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In this paper, I try to show how epagōgē is related to the actions of nous, and furthermore to the kind of calculative (λογιστικὴ) or deliberative (βουλευτικὴ) phantasia analysed by Aristotle in De Anima. By examining the role, whichAristotle attaches to the epagōgē, nous and phantasia, I conclude that the Stagerite philosopher didn’t mean to identify epagōgē merely to a process of systematic correlation of the empirical facts. Experience finds its deserved place inAristotle’s epistemological system, but it is the mind’s actions that lead us to discover the new and the novel. Among them phantasia has a distinguished constructive role. Aristotle in his logical treatises describes the classic theory of syllogismōs and the less systematic theory of epagōgē. Transcribing, however, the argument from the field of logic to one of the epistemic process within Aristotle’s philosophy, I argue that in the light of De Anima, and specifically at those points where the philosopher mentions the power of the mind to imagine and infer, Aristotle’s model of knowledge is better explained, and the epistemic character that the philosopher attributed to the meaning of epagōgē, nous and phantasia is demonstrated in a more complete way.
68. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Maja Pellikaan-Engel Calypso’s Oath: on Biased Traditions in Philosophy.: A Plea for Integrating Women’s Perspectives in Philosophy
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Calypso’s oath helps us to take a fresh look at several well-known texts from classical antiquity. We discover that Homer’s character Calypso is not an egoistic sex bomb, but a kind, intelligent woman with a highly developed moral sense. Her protests against a double standard, and her view that rationality and empathy together form the basis of proper moral conduct are surprisingly modern. Authorities on ethics, such as Socrates, Aristotle, Cicero, Seneca and Augustine, seem to take double standards for granted. In their thinking, rationality plays the chief role and empathy receives very little attention. These philosophers laid the foundation for the development of one-sided views in the history of philosophy, in which women are for the most part forgotten minor players. It is high time we put an end to these biased traditions in philosophy and start paying attention to the insights of women philosophers from early champions of equal rights, such as Hipparchia and Olympe de Gouges, to present day thinkers, such as Hannah Arendt, Simone de Beauvoir and Marta Nussbaum.
69. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Zacharoula Petraki Plato’s Use of Shadow-painting as a Metaphor for Deceptive Speech
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Contrary to the traditional viewpoint which interpreted Plato’s stance towards poetry as derogatory, more recently scholars have rightly argued that Plato’s treatment of painting is too complicated to be dismissed as negative only. Painting is for Plato a well-adapted analogy which allows him to discuss highly intricate philosophical issues, as, for example, the relationship of the forms with our earthly realm of sense-perception. It also provides him with useful vocabulary to conduct his philosophical investigations. In this paper, I focus on Plato’s employment of one particular pictorial technique, that of shadow-painting (skiagraphia). I argue that this innovative 5th century technique served Plato as a metaphor for discussing the intricate philosophical issue of opposition and antithesis (ta enantia). In specific terms, Plato associates the technique of skiagraphia with the poets, sophists and the unsophisticated non-philosophical majority.
70. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Matus Porubjak The Bastards (Why Socrates Quotes Theognis)
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The paper deals with the so-called “Theognidean dilemma” in Plato’s Meno. The author tries to answer the question, if aretê is a matter of teaching or a natural human endowment from the view point of the Theognidea collection. First, he tries to identify both the ‘eugenic’ and the ‘didactic’ tendencies of the Theognidea and compare them. Then, he turns to the role of Kyrnos’ character in the collection. The author concludes that neither Kyrnos nor Theognis are historical personalities per se; primarily they are models, like the characters of Socratic dialogues. On the one hand, we have the moderate Theognis, the poet, master and erômenos with a sense of measure and justice, and on the other hand the erratic Kyrnos, the handsome and gifted erastês with a tendency to intemperance and hubris. Like Kyrnos, Meno in Plato’s dialogue is able to improve his skills and became moderate, but eventually, he fails in life. By choosing Theognis, Plato seems to reflect this similarity. From the viewpoint of the Theognidea, there is no contradiction in the verses quoted by Socrates in Meno. The position seems to be clear and “eugenic” in principle. Low-borns will never become good, but good high-borns often fail. The riddle of high-born failure is present in the works of many authors of the 5th and 4th centuries. All they are asking is how those who are destined to rule and be ex-cellent by birth and education can fail so much, as well as how society can be saved from ‘bastardization’. This issue links the Theognidea with Meno, and the quoted verses beautifully fit the topic of the dialogue.
71. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Leonardo Ramos-Umana Aristotle on Reformation of Character
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When we talk about reforming the character we mean the process of converting a state (héxis) already established into another that is contrary, or, more generally, to convert someone vicious into someone virtuous. By common trend it is affirmed that reformation is indeed a possible, based on the Categories 13a19-30, alternative, which became popular after William Bondeson and his article from 1974.1 However, the purpose of this paper is to explain (briefly at least) how the character’s change would be according to the Nicomachean Ethics.
72. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Adam David Roth Embodied Rhetoric: Plato on the Similarities Between Rhetoric and Medicine
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By tracing the process through which the stark opposition Plato draws between rhetoric and medicine becomes re-expressed as a similarity between the two, this essay seeks a fuller interpretation of Plato’s attitude toward rhetoric, supplementing the work of scholars who claim that the only evidence Plato gives us about an ideal rhetoric is through its relationship to philosophy and dialectic. This paper shows instead that another way Plato captures the potential of rhetoric as a true art is precisely through its intricate relationship to medicine.
73. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Abby Rutherford Republic 473c-480a: Character, Epistême and Doxa
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Most interpretations of the last stretch of RepublicV (473c-480a) attempt to set interpretive parameters by contextualizing the argument with the hope of shedding light on the possible intent behind it and its structure. However, the analysis of the argument is often reduced to a discussion of the differences between knowledge (epistême) and belief (dôxa) in general and their objects without much consideration for the possible implication of whom these states are attributed to. I will argue that the types of person classified in the preamble to the argument are integral to understanding ‘epistême’ and ‘dôxa’ as they are detailed here. Once character is taken into account, Socrates’ discussions of ‘epistême’ and ‘dôxa’ as ‘dunâmeis’ takes on a new importance, and the discussion of the “objects” of epistême and dôxa comes to be less about different kinds of possible objects as it is about different methodologies for understanding the world. The aim of the argument is not to show the dif-ference between epistême and dôxa, but rather to show why the philosopher ought to rule, and what about the philosopher makes her more fit to do so.
74. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Eduardo Salcedo Ortiz Knowledge, Fear and Body: a Reading of Alcibiades I
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Plato’s philosophy has been catalogued as idealist, but this issue can be quite haste if the content of his dialogues is deeply examined. In the Alcibiades I Socrates shows his lover how important is to let him be educated by his god. In this dialogue, we could see as well something inherent to our existence; possibly something which we have dealt with, something that seems strange for us: the master-disciple relationship, the possible fear presented in the philosophic exercise and the importance of the body in the man self-comprehension, those issues dealt in this work more than grabbing the truth tend to offer a light about what philosophy can provide to us and how we can contribute to it.
75. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Rita Salis The Accident and its Causes: Pseudo-Alexander on Aristotle (Metaphysics Ε3)
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Pseudo-Alexander’s commentary in Metaphysics Ε3 is one of the three ancient commentaries which came down to us together with Ascepius’s commentary and Pseudo-Philoponus’s one, in Latin. Pseudo-Alexander’s work, in particular, constitutes the source of interpretation of the Aristotelian text for many modern scholars. In chapter 3 Aristotle shows that there are causes of accidental being, which are generable and destructible without ever being in course of being generated or destroyed. This problem is one of the most difficult and controversial for Aristotle. The thesis is explained by Aristotle with examples concerning past and future events. Pseudo-Alexander considers them as referring to accidental causes. The exegete’s explanation of both cases introduces some elements which are totally extraneous to the Aristotelian text, but nevertheless it could be helpful to cast some light on the understanding of the most controversial passages. In the final passage, Aristotle raises the question of what kind of cause the accident leads to, whether to the material or to the final or to the efficient cause. It is apparently left without an answer. Pseudo-Alexander gives a plausible solution, which is nonetheless probably only partial. The chapter was also examined with reference to the problem of determinism in Aristotle.
76. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Byung Seok Son The Problem of Conflict Between Filial Piety and Justice: A Comparative Study of the Views of Confucius and Socrateson the Relation of Father and Son
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In Analects 13:18 Confucius said that it is not upright for a son to give evidence against his father who stole a sheep. According to Confucius’ view, it is upright for a father and son to conceal each other’s misconduct. Similarly, in Plato’s dialogue Euthyphro Socrates seems to stress the son’s pious obligation to his father, when he regarded Euthyphro’s action of prosecuting his own father for homicide (‘dikē phonou’) on behalf of a laborer as crazy or strange. It seemed to Socrates that Euthyphro’s action violated the norms of filial piety, and he considered it inappropriate to prosecute a relative on behalf of an outsider. Like Confucius, Socrates seems to want the son, Euthyphro, to conceal the misconduct of his father’s committing murder. In this paper, however, despite the appearance of similarity in views, I want to focus on their differences. I assert that unlike Confucius, Socrates did not deny that justice (dikaiosynē) has an important meaning ahead of filial piety, if such a circumstance arises.
77. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Koji Tachibana Aristotle on Virtue and Friendship
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Aristotle, in his Nicomachean Ethics, considers how one becomes virtuous. However, when asking the question of how, he does not refer to ‘by friend’ as an option; all he refers to are ‘by learning’, ‘by training’, ‘by habituation’, ‘by god’ and ‘by luck’. Why does he not do so? First, I point out the fact that both Aristotle and Plato do not refer to the option of ‘by friend’ when asking the question of how. Second, I argue that Aristotle does not overlook the educational role of friendship. He understands that one needs friends. Third and finally, I consider the reason why Aristotle hesitates to emphasize the educational role of friendship and indicate that his theory of the mean causes it. This reveals the strained relationship between his theory of the mean and that of friendship in his ethical theory.
78. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Tomás Troster Science is Cultural: a Comment on Aristotle’s Epistemology
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Grasp principles and create concepts (noemata) seem to be very close activities in Aristotle’s epistemology. Indeed, definitions are among Aristotle’s principles of science. They are not as universal as logical principles, but they are indispensable for the very existence of science, which is a kind of knowledge that must involve truth and truth exists only in language. Nevertheless, as elements of language, definitions and concepts are created under the structure of words, and these represent objects not in a natural way but by convention (kata syntheken) (DI, 1). Though the philosopher does not state it, a concept/noema – despite being a product of intelligence/noesis (as its own morphology indicates) – is always a product of a specific culture and, consequently, is science. From this point of view, science would be a kind knowledge that intends to be universal, but it is no more than an interpretation which is culturally limited by a language.
79. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Pantazis Tselemanis Metaphysics Z: The Real Set-up
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Metaphysics Z is usually interpreted as moving from the pri-macy of the particular, individual substance to the primacy of the substantial form. This rests partly on the undeniable fact that the rather restricted universe of the Categories is there expanded into the much wider universe of the Meta-physics; but it also rests on the questionable view of an abrupt shift from a broadly logical to a purely metaphysical doctrine. In this paper, I suggest that the Physics universe is under consideration in book Z almost from the start, and present a partial sketch of reading the first three chapters accordingly.
80. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 2 > Issue: 2
Thomas Tuozzo Rethinking the Division of Pleasure in Plato’s Philebus
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In the Philebus Socrates presents his division of the kinds of pleasures and pains to an interlocutor who (a) confesses himself incapable of employing the dialectical method of division that this task ideally requires and (b) is committed to defending a hedonist theory of value. These two features of his interlocutor affect the way in which Socrates presents his accounts of pleasure and pain. The philosophical reader needs to rethink the accounts of pleasure and pain to produce an account that is free from these limitations. In this paper I sketch the outlines of such an account, based on material that Socrates provides throughout the dialogue. I argue that there are two fundamental, mutually irreducible types of pain and pleasure: those produced by the disruption and restoration of a natural harmony (either bodily or psychic), and those involving the representation of oneself as in a good or bad state. I then produce an account of pleasure and pain as such, which applies to both of these types: pleasure and pain are the cognition of oneself as in a good or bad state.