By David Bronstein
'All instructing and all highbrow studying end up from pre-existing knowledge.' So starts off Aristotle's Posterior Analytics, the most very important, and tough, works within the heritage of western philosophy. David Bronstein sheds new mild in this hard textual content by way of arguing that it really is coherently established round issues of tolerating philosophical curiosity: wisdom and studying.
The Posterior Analytics, on Bronstein's analyzing, is a sustained exam of clinical wisdom: what it's and the way it really is got. Aristotle first discusses central different types of medical wisdom (epist?m? and nous). He then offers a compelling account, in opposite order, of the categories of studying one must adopt in an effort to gather them. The Posterior Analytics therefore emerges as an elegantly equipped paintings during which Aristotle describes the mind's ascent from sense-perception of details to clinical wisdom of first rules.
Bronstein additionally highlights Plato's effect on Aristotle's textual content. for every kind of studying Aristotle discusses, Bronstein uncovers an example of Meno's Paradox (a puzzle from Plato's Meno in keeping with which inquiry and studying are very unlikely) and an answer to it. furthermore, he argues, opposed to present orthodoxy, that Aristotle is devoted to the Socratic photo of inquiry, in keeping with which one may still search what a thing's essence is ahead of looking its demonstrable attributes and their causes.
Aristotle on wisdom and Learning could be of curiosity to scholars and students of historical philosophy, epistemology, or philosophy of science.
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Additional resources for Aristotle on knowledge and learning : the posterior analytics
As Aristotle says in T4, it is absurd to think that prior to learning one knows something in the very way one goes on to learn it. The second horn is harder to work out, but I think it can become clear once we remind ourselves of the context of the passage and introduce two implicit assumptions. Aristotle is discussing, by way of illustration, his Prior Knowledge Requirement for intellectual learning. Let’s say (as the antecedent of the conditional εἰ δὲ μή, τὸ ἐν τῷ Μένωνι ἀπόρημα συμβήσεται· ἢ γὰρ οὐδὲν μαθήσεται ἢ ἃ οἶδεν.
77 Learning is one way of improving one’s cognitive condition. So what interests Aristotle (non-didactic learning) is an instance of what interests Socrates (inquiry, broadly construed). 78 The ﬁrst horn of Aristotle’s dilemma is easy enough to understand. T7 begins with a conditional statement whose antecedent denies what Aristotle has said in the previous passage, T6—namely, that there is a difference between knowing universally and without qualiﬁcation. If there is no such difference, then one possibility is that before learning the geometer already knows without qualiﬁcation that C has 2R.
Non-scientiﬁc knowledge of explanatorily-connected facts, and Chapters 6}4, 8}}4–5, and 12}1 on noetic vs. non-noetic knowledge of deﬁnitions. 33, which I do not discuss, where Aristotle explains how there can be opinion (doxa) and scientiﬁc knowledge of the same thing. 53 See Salmieri 2014: 6. 54 I discuss what it means to have noetic knowledge of a deﬁnition as such in Chapter 4. 55 For useful discussions of this distinction see Brown 2008: 469–70 and Fine 2014. Brown calls these the ‘matching’ and ‘stepping-stone’ versions of the requirement, respectively.