Aristotle on knowledge and learning : the posterior by David Bronstein

By David Bronstein

'All educating and all highbrow studying emerge as from pre-existing knowledge.' So starts off Aristotle's Posterior Analytics, the most vital, and hard, works within the heritage of western philosophy. David Bronstein sheds new mild in this demanding textual content via arguing that it really is coherently based round subject matters of tolerating philosophical curiosity: wisdom and studying.

The Posterior Analytics, on Bronstein's examining, is a sustained exam of clinical wisdom: what it really is and the way it's obtained. Aristotle first discusses imperative sorts of clinical wisdom (epist?m? and nous). He then presents 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 prepared paintings within which Aristotle describes the mind's ascent from sense-perception of details to clinical wisdom of first ideas.

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 accordance with which inquiry and studying are most unlikely) and an answer to it. moreover, he argues, opposed to present orthodoxy, that Aristotle is dedicated to the Socratic photograph of inquiry, in line with which one should still search what a thing's essence is prior to looking its demonstrable attributes and their causes.

Aristotle on wisdom and Learning might be of curiosity to scholars and students of historical philosophy, epistemology, or philosophy of science.

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He also says that demonstration produces or causes (poiēsei) scientific knowledge (71b25). , acquire scientific knowledge) by demonstration must take Aristotle to be saying that demonstration is the means by which a scientist expresses or actualizes a piece of knowledge she already possesses and previously acquired by non-demonstrative means. However, a more natural reading is that demonstration is a way of acquiring scientific knowledge in the first place. , by exhibiting syllogisms to colleagues or students or even herself).

58 If Plato thinks that what’s required is true cognition, then he and Aristotle seem to agree: all (intellectual) learning requires prior true cognition. For, as I have been using ‘cognition’ in reference to Plato, true cognition in Plato seems to have the same range as gnōsis in Aristotle. However, Plato may think that in some cases false cognition about x is sufficient for seeking and discovering it. 60 For Aristotle, (intellectual) learning requires prior gnōsis, which covers a broad range of cognitive states, from low- to high-level knowledge.

3, 90a2. 13, 97a5–10 (in T47), a16–17 (in T48). See also Ackrill 1981: 366 and Fine 2010: 131 n18. 49 For I want to emphasize that epistēmē is a type of knowledge (gnōsis), the type characteristically possessed by expert scientists, since it is scientists who characteristically meet the requirements for possessing epistēmē (which requirements I discuss in Chapters 2}3 and 4}}1–6). For Aristotle, there are higher and lower levels of knowledge, with nous at the top of the scale and perception at the bottom.

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