Ancient Perspectives on Aristotles De anima

Ancient Perspectives on Aristotles De anima

Gerd VAN RIEL
Pierre DESTRÉE
Cyril K. CRAWFORD
Leen VAN CAMPE
Volume: 41
Copyright Date: 2009
Published by: Leuven University Press
Pages: 218
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt9qdwr7
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  • Book Info
    Ancient Perspectives on Aristotles De anima
    Book Description:

    Aristotle’s treatise On the Soul figures among the most influential texts in the intellectual history of the West. It is the first systematic treatise on the nature and functioning of the human soul, presenting Aristotle’s authoritative analyses of, among others, sense perception, imagination, memory, and intellect. The ongoing debates on this difficult work continue the commentary tradition that dates back to antiquity. This volume offers a selection of papers by distinguished scholars, exploring the ancient perspectives on Aristotle’s De anima, from Aristotle’s earliest successors through the Aristotelian Commentators at the end of Antiquity. It constitutes a twin publication with a volume entitled Medieval Perspectives on Aristotle’s De anima (to be published in the Series ‘Philosophes Médiévaux’, Peeters Publ.), both volumes appearing to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the De Wulf Mansion Centre for Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy at K.U. Leuven and U.C. Louvain. Contributions by: Enrico Berti, Klaus Corcilius, Frans de Haas, Andrea Falcon, Patrick Macfarlane, Pierre-Marie Morel, Ronald Polansky, R.W. Sharples, Nathanael Stein, Annick Stevens, Joel Yurdin, Marco Zingano.

    eISBN: 978-94-6166-024-4
    Subjects: Philosophy

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. I-IV)
  2. INTRODUCTION
    (pp. V-XII)
    Gerd Van Riel and Arnis Ritups

    Aristotle’s treatiseOn the Soulfigures among the most influential texts in the intellectual history of the West. It is the first systematic treatise on the nature and functioning of the (human) soul, presenting Aristotle’s authoritative analyses of, among others, sense perception, imagination, memory, and intellect. The ongoing debates on this difficult work continue the commentary tradition that dates back to antiquity.

    This volume offers a selection of papers, exploring the ancient perspectives on Aristotle’sDe anima, from Aristotle’s earliest successors through the Aristotelian Commentators at the end of Antiquity. It constitutes a twin publication with a volume entitledMedieval...

  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. XIII-XIV)
  4. HOW ARE EPISODES OF THOUGHT INITIATED ACCORDING TO ARISTOTLE?
    (pp. 1-16)
    Klaus Corcilius

    De anima Book ii, chapter 5, distinguishes two kinds of δύναμις. One δύναμις, δύναμις₁ is a remote δύναμις, the other, δύναμις,₂ is an immediate δύναμις. In order to make this distinction plain, Aristotle says:

    Text 1 We must distinguish different senses of δύναμις and ένтελέχεια: In the present we speak as if each of these had only one sense. For something can be knowing either (i) in such a way as we would call man a knower, because man falls within the class of beings that know or have knowledge, or (ii) (it can be knowing) in such a way...

  5. AFTER LITERALISM AND SPIRITUALISM: THE PLASTICITY OF ARISTOTELIAN PERCEPTION
    (pp. 17-34)
    Nathanael Stein

    At the end of his initial treatment of perception inDa II5, Aristotle sums up as follows:

    What is capable of perceiving is potentially such as the object of perception is actually, just as was said. When it is being affected, therefore, it is not similar, but when it has been affected it becomes like it and is such as it is.¹

    What perceives is thus in some way acted upon by the object of perception, such as to be made like it. To give an account of Aristotle’s theory is to say how perception is a process of...

  6. L’ APPARITION DE LA CONSCIENCE DANS LE DE ANIMA ET D’AUTRES ŒUVRES D’ARISTOTE
    (pp. 35-48)
    Annick Stevens

    Une des questions les plus présentes dans la philosophie contemporaine est celle de la conscience que nous avons de notre propre existence, ou le fait que notre propre existence fait question pour nous. Or, cette question n’apparaît pas tout de suite dans la philosophie occidentale naissante; on ne la trouve pas encore explicitement formulée chez Platon: dans l’Alcibiade,il est bien question de prendre conscience de ce que nous sommes, mais nulle part n’est interrogée l’évidence que nous sommes. Cette évidence, qui est celle de la conscience ordinaire, est pour la première fois formulée explicitement comme telle par Aristote,...

  7. KNOW THYSELF: PLATO AND ARISTOTLE ON AWARENESS
    (pp. 49-70)

    With this statement Proclus opens the introduction to his commentary on theFirst Alcibiades. This statement seems appropriate at the celebration of the ⁵⁰thjubilee of the De Wulf Mansion Centre for the Study of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy. In this Centre the study of Proclus is currently flourishing as never before. Indeed, ‘the whole of philosophical consideration’ has found such an attractive place in Leuven, and not least ‘the discerning of our own being’, in major publications on consciousness and changing selves. Therefore it is a pleasure to congratulate the present inhabitants of the Centre on the ⁵⁰thanniversary...

  8. ARISTOTELIAN IMAGINATION AND THE EXPLANATION OF BEHAVIOR
    (pp. 71-88)
    Joel Yurdin

    The importance of imagination (фανтασ(α) in Aristotle’s psychology can hardly be overstated. Aristotle appeals to it in explaining a wide variety of psychological phenomena, including perceiving, concept acquisition, thinking, memory, deliberate remembering, the formation of desires, and dreaming. Imagination is also crucial for the explanation of pursuit and avoidance behavior, particularly in non-human animals. It is so important, in fact, that Aristotle claims, in the first chapter of theMetaphysics, that non-human animals ‘live by episodes of imagination and memories’ (980b26).¹

    But what, exactly, is imagination? In light of the diverse roles imagination is expected to play in Aristotle’s psychology,...

  9. CONSIDÉRATIONS SUR L’ARGUMENTATION D’ARISTOTE DANS DE ANIMA III 4
    (pp. 89-106)
    Marco Zingano

    Dans leDe anima,après avoir examiné la nature de la sensation et celle de l’imagination, Aristote se propose d’examiner la nature de la pensée. Cette étude, qui occupe les chapitres 4 à 8 du troisième livre, présente des difficultés considérables d’exégèse, notamment en ce qui concerne le court et à maints égards trop énigmatique chapitre III 5. Dans ce qui suit, je voudrais concentrer mon attention sur la première partie du chapitre III 4, celle qui ouvre toute cette section sur la nature de la pensée, en prenant comme point focal les arguments à l’aide desquels Aristote est censée...

  10. GOD, THE DIVINE, AND NOV∑ IN RELATION TO THE DE ANIMA
    (pp. 107-124)
    Patrick Macfarlane and Ronald Polansky

    In his treatise on the possibility of prophecy in sleep, Aristotle argues that dreams, while not God-sent, have a special daemonic status resulting from their link to nature:

    On the whole, forasmuch as certain of the other animals [besides humans] also dream, it may be concluded that dreams are not sent by God (θεόπμπтα), nor are they designed for this purpose. They are daemonic (δαιμόνια), however, for nature is daemonic, though not divine (θεία). A sign is this: the power of foreseeing the future and of having vivid dreams is found in persons of inferior type, which implies that God...

  11. PARTIES DU CORPS ET FONCTIONS DE L’ÂME EN MÉTAPHYSIQUE Z
    (pp. 125-140)
    Pierre-Marie Morel

    Depuis plus d’une vingtaine d’années, la place de la philosophie du vivant dans la pensée d’Aristote a fait l’objet d’une importante réévaluation.¹ D’une part, il est désormais acquis que les recherches biologiques ne sont pas simplement descriptives et limitées à des visées positives, par opposition à la dimension supposée plus spéculative de laMétaphysiquepar exemple. D’autre part, il est apparu que la méthode biologique, comme ses résultats, se nourrissaient de l’apport des autres disciplines théorétiques : non seulement la physique au sens large, mais encore la philosophie première et la logique. Parmi quelques autres ouvrages, le volume édité par...

  12. LA CAUSE DU MOUVEMENT DANS LES ÊTRES VIVANTS
    (pp. 141-154)
    Enrico Berti

    Le chapitre iii 10 duDe animaest souvent cité comme parallèle deMetaph. Lambda 7, 1072a26-b4, c’est-à-dire de l’explication qu’Aristote donne de la manière dont le moteur immobile meut le ciel: il le meut de la même manière que l’objet du désir et l’objet de l’intellection meuvent les êtres vivants, parce qu’ils les meuvent sans être mus¹ . En effet entreDAIII 10 etMetaph. Lambda 7, il semble y avoir un parallélisme parfait: les deux textes identifient l’objet du désir avec le bien, véritable ou apparent, et tous deux affirment que le moteur en question meut sans...

  13. THE HELLENISTIC PERIOD: WHAT HAPPENED TO HYLOMORPHISM?
    (pp. 155-166)
    R.W. Sharples

    Harold Cherniss once described the history of Platonic interpretation as ‘a series of insistently charitable attempts on the part of western philosophers and their acolytes, each to baptise Plato in his own particular faith’.¹ Naturally enough, every generation is indeed interested in those aspects of the thought of past philosophers that can be related to their own contemporary concerns. What is true for Plato is also true for Aristotle, though there has perhaps been less volatility in the interpretation of the latter than of the former, a difference that is in large part due to the different nature of their...

  14. THE SCOPE AND UNITY OF ARISTOTLE’S INVESTIGATION OF THE SOUL
    (pp. 167-183)
    Andrea Falcon

    Ancient thought about the soul started well before Aristotle. For example, we find important insights and discussions on the soul in Plato’s works. It is telling that thePhaedowas also known to ancient readers asOn the Soul. However, these insights and discussions are never brought together and unified in a theory of the soul. Aristotle was the first person to offer a comprehensive, fully developed theory of the soul. He was also the first person to treat the soul as a distinct subject matter. The reason for this innovation is to be found in Aristotle’s interest in life....

  15. BIBLIOGRAPHY
    (pp. 184-196)
  16. LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS
    (pp. 197-198)
  17. Back Matter
    (pp. 199-206)