David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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History and Philosophy of Logic 31 (3):193-218 (2011)
Modern logicians have sought to unlock the modal secrets of Aristotle's Syllogistic by assuming a version of essentialism and treating it as a primitive within the semantics. These attempts ultimately distort Aristotle's ontology. None of these approaches make full use of tests found throughout Aristotle's corpus and ancient Greek philosophy. I base a system on Aristotle's tests for things that can never combine (polarity) and things that can never separate (inseparability). The resulting system not only reproduces Aristotle's recorded results for the apodictic syllogistic in the Prior Analytics but it also generates rather than assumes Aristotle's distinctions among 'necessary', 'essential' and 'accidental'. By developing a system around tests that are in Aristotle and basic to ancient Greek philosophy, the system is linked to a history of practices, providing a platform for future work on the origins of logic
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