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Aristotle

384 322 BCE

called the first scientist

Copyright P. Di Georgio 2015

Aristotle biography

Student at Plato's Academy in Athens

Tutor of young Alexander the Great

Returns later in life to set up his own school, the Lyceum (approx.
335 BCE)
Subjects: botany, biology, logic, music, mathematics, astronomy,
medicine, cosmology, physics, the history of philosophy,
metaphysics, psychology, ethics, theology, rhetoric, political
history, government and political theory, rhetoric, and the arts
Perhaps first great library of all time
Of what was likely around 200 texts by Aristotle, we only have 31
surviving

Totally different foundational


principles

Cognition and perception are trustworthy sources of knowledge

Exact opposite of Plato

Empiricism contra idealism (Plato)

i.e. we take phenomenon for what it is, at face value, and we try to explain it

We are drawn to philosophy by our confusion and our puzzlement

Science vs. common/credible belief (dialectic)

Science explains what is less well known by what is better known and more
fundamental

What we want is the former but he almost always addresses the latter as well

i.e. we explain what we know less fully by way of explaining in terms of what we know more
fully

Both science and credible belief must make use of, and obey, laws of logic

School of Athens

Aristotle on science
3 types
i) theoretical, ii) practical, iii) productive
i) knowledge for its own sake, ii) right conduction and right action iii)
making beautiful or useful things
internet: first scientist
?
science for Aristotle is not what we (usually) mean by science today
not experimental, not objective, not naturalistic/physicalist
no telos of progress
qualitative, rather than quantitative descriptions of things

Aristotle's works
Organon
Categories
De Interpretatione
Prior Analytics
Posterior Analytics
Topics
Sophistical Refutations
Theoretical Sciences
Physics
Generation and Corruption
De Caelo [On the Heavens]
Metaphysics
De Anima [On the Soul]
Parva Naturalia [Brief Natural Treatises]
History of Animals
Parts of Animals
Movement of Animals
Meteorology
Progression of Animals
Generation of Animals
Practical Sciences
Nicomachean Ethics
Eudemian Ethics
Magna Moralia [Great Ethics]
Politics
Productive Science
Rhetoric
Poetics

Plato's works
Euthyphro
Apology
Crito
Phdo
Cratylus
Thetetus
Sophist
Statesman
Parmenides
Philebus
Symposium
Phdrus
Alcibiades
2nd Alcibiades
Hipparchus, Rival Lovers
Theages
Charmides
Laches
Lysis
Euthydemus
Protagoras
Gorgias
Meno
Hippias major, Hippias minor
Ion
Menexenus
Clitophon
Republic
Timus
Critias
Minos
Laws
Epinomis
Letters