German classicist's monumental study of the origins of European thought in Greek literature and philosophy. Brilliant, widely influential. Includes "Homer's View of Man," "The Olympian Gods," "The Rise of the Individual in the Early Greek Lyric," "Pindar's Hymn to Zeus," "Myth and Reality in Greek Tragedy," and "Aristophanes and Aesthetic Criticism.".
In this study, Levin explores Plato's engagement with the Greek literary tradition in his treatment of key linguistic issues. This investigation, conjoined with a new interpretation of the Republic's familiar critique of poets, supports the view that Plato's work represents a valuable precedent for contemporary reflections on ways in which philosophy might benefit from appeals to literature.
This is a major study of conceptions of selfhood and personality in Homer and Greek Tragedy and Philosophy. The focus is on the norms of personality in Greek psychology and ethics. Gill argues that the key to understanding Greek thought of this type is to counteract the subjective and individualistic aspects of our own thinking about the person. He defines an "objective-participant" conception of personality, symbolized by the idea of the person as an interlocutor in a (...) series of psychological and ethical dialogues. (shrink)
All volumes of Professor Guthrie's great history of Greekphilosophy have won their due acclaim. The most striking merits of Guthrie's work are his mastery of a tremendous range of ancient literature and modern scholarship, his fairness and balance of judgement and the lucidity and precision of his English prose. He has achieved clarity and comprehensiveness.
Machine generated contents note: Introduction; Part I. Theoretical Views about Pity and Fear as Aesthetic Emotions: 1. Drama and the emotions: an Indo-European connection? 2. Gorgias: a strange trio, the poetic emotions; 3. Plato: from reality to tragedy and back; 4. Aristotle: the first 'theorist' of the aesthetic emotions; Part II. Pity and Fear within Tragedies: 5. An introduction; 6. Aeschylus: Persians; 7. Prometheus Bound; 8. Sophocles: Ajax; 9. Euripides: Orestes; Appendix: catharsis and the emotions in the definition of tragedy (...) in the Poetics. (shrink)
Socrates' greatest philosophical contribution was to have initiated the search for definitions. In Definition in GreekPhilosophy his views on definition are examined, together with those of his successors, including Plato, Aristotle, the Stoics, Galen, the Sceptics and Plotinus. Although definition was a major pre-occupation for many Greek philosophers, it has rarely been treated as a separate topic in its own right in recent years. This volume, which contains fourteen new essays by leading scholars, aims to reawaken (...) interest in a number of central and relatively unexplored issues concerning definition. These issues are briefly set out in the Introduction, which also seeks to point out scholarly and philosophical questions which merit further study. (shrink)
How were the Greeks of the sixth century BC able to invent philosophy and tragedy? Richard Seaford argues that a large part of the answer can be found in another momentous development, the invention and rapid spread of coinage. By transforming social relations, monetization contributed to the concepts of the universe as an impersonal system (fundamental to Presocratic philosophy) and of the individual alienated from his own kin and from the gods, as found in tragedy.
Doing GreekPhilosophy conveys a vivid sense of dynamism and continuity of the Greek philosophical tradition and illustrates how interaction between Greek philosophers creates and sustains that tradition. It concentrates on a set of inter-related challenges and problems that emerged early in the tradition and moves on to the subsequent reactions to them.
The American way of Renaissance and the Humanistic Tradition of Greece -- The Aristotelian tradition in American naturalism -- George Santayana and Greekphilosophy -- Frederick J.E. Woodbridge and the Aristotelian tradition -- John Dewey and ancient philosophies -- John H. Randall Jr.'s interpretation of Greekphilosophy -- The ontology of Herbert W. Schneider -- Ernest Nagel's pragmatism and Aristotle's principle of contradiction -- The naturalistic metaphysics of Justus Buchler -- Naturalism and the platonic tradition.
A study of Hippolytus of Rome and his treatment of Presocratic Philosophy, used as a case study to argue against the use of collections of fragments and in favour of the idea of reading "embedded texts" with attention to the interpretation and interests of the quoting author. A study of methodology in early GreekPhilosophy. Includes novel interpretations of Heraclitus and Empedocles, and an argument for the unity of Empedocles's poem.
lecture 1. A dialectical approach to Greekphilosophy -- lecture 2. From myth to philosophy, Hesiod and Thales -- lecture 3. The Milesians and the quest for being -- lecture 4. The great intrusion, Heraclitus -- lecture 5. Parmenides, the champion of being -- lecture 6. Reconciling Heraclitus and Parmenides -- lecture 7. The Sophists, Protagoras, the first "humanist" -- lecture 8. Socrates -- lecture 9. An introduction to Plato's Dialogues -- lecture 10. Plato versus the Sophists, (...) I -- lecture 11. Plato versus the Sophists, II -- lecture 12. Plato's Forms, I -- lecture 13. Plato's Forms, II -- lecture 14. Plato versus the Presocratics -- lecture 15. The Republic, the political implications of the Forms -- lecture 16. Final reflections on Plato -- lecture 17. Aristotle, "The" philosopher -- lecture 18. Aristotle's Physics, What is nature? -- lecture 19. Aristotle's Physics, The four causes -- lecture 20. Why plants have souls -- lecture 21. Aristotle's hierarchical cosmos -- lecture 22. Aristotle's teleological Politics -- lecture 23. Aristotle's teleological ethics -- lecture 24. The philosophical life. (shrink)
This article offers a study of the early formation and development of the ideal of harmony in ancient Chinese philosophy and ancient Greekphilosophy. It shows that, unlike the Pythagorean notion of harmony, which is primarily based on a linear progressive model with a pre-set order, the ancient Chinese concept of harmony is best understood as a comprehensive process of harmonization. It encompasses spatial as well as temporal dimensions, metaphysical as well as moral and aesthetical dimensions. It (...) is a fundamentally open notion in the sense that it does not aim to conform to any pre-set order. This broader, richer, and more liberal understanding of harmony has had a profound influence on Chinese culture as whole in its long history. (shrink)
This volume brings together Seth Benardete's studies of Hesiod's Theogony, Homer's Iliad, and Greek tragedy, of eleven Platonic dialogues, and Aristotle's Metaphysics. These essays, some never before published, others difficult to find, span four decades of his work and document its impressive range. Benardete's philosophic reading of the poets and his poetic reading of the philosophers share a common ground that makes this collection a whole. The key, suggested by his reflections on Leo Strauss in the last piece, lies (...) in the question of how to read Plato. Benardete's way is characterized not just by careful attention to the literary form that separates doctrine from dialogue, and speeches from deed rather, by following the dynamic of these differences, he uncovers the argument that belongs to the dialogue as a whole. The "turnaround" such an argument undergoes bears consequences for understanding the dialogue as radical as the conversion of the philosopher in Plato's image of the cave. Benardete's original interpretations are the fruits of this discovery of the "argument of the action.". (shrink)
Studies in GreekPhilosophy. Gregory Vlastos. Edited by Daniel W. Graham. Princeton NJ, Princeton University Press, 1995. Volume I The Presocratics pp. xxxiv + 389; Volume II Socrates, Plato, and Their Tradition pp. xxiv + 349. 40 per volume (hb.), ISBN 0-691-03310-2, 0-691-03311-0; 14.50 per volume (pb.), ISBN 0-691-01937-1, 0-691-01938-X.
The Greek State.--The Greek woman.--On music and words.--Homer's contest.--The relation of Schopenhauer's philosophy to a German culture.--Philosophy during the tragic age of the Greeks.--On truth and falsity in their ultramoral sense.
Oedipus the tyrant and the limits of political rationalism -- Blind faith and enlightened statesmanship in Oedipus at colonus -- The pious heroism of Antigone -- Conclusion: Nietzsche, Plato, and Aristotle on philosophy and tragedy.
This book contains sixteen essays, presented at the seventh Pittsburgh-Konstanz Colloquium in 2005. It includes historical topics, ranging from ancient Greek thought to late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century philosophy, and contemporary topics, including causal pluralism, epiphenomenalism, and causality in disciplines as different as physics and economics.The concept of causation has been elaborated in many ways, with many different philosophical functions, including its problematic relations to the concept of explanation. The essays cover a variety subjects, and the results are (...) quite disparate. McCord Adams's discussion of medieval philosophers on sacramental causation and Norton's challenge to "causal .. (shrink)
The paper focuses on the trajectory of involvement of the ancient Greek philosophers, up to Callisthenes and Clearchus, in the competition of the two greatest oracles, the Delphic and the Didymian (Branchidae), on the one hand, and in the ideology of colonization of the East, on the other. While the pre-Socratic Milesian philosophers were close to the Branchidae, Plato and Aristotle supported Delphi and the Delphic Apollo-Dionysian syncretism. I examine how theoriginal interpretation of the famous Delphic maxim 'Know Yourself (...) related to political issues, e.g. implementation of the Platonic and Aristotelian political Utopias, and how after Alexander this interpretation lost its value. I conclude that from the very dawn, philosophy has been neither the first nor the last comer to the stage of world affairs, but already is inside them, acting as a creative intermediary within such problem-producing domains as politics and religion. (shrink)
The article explores Santayana's views on Greekphilosophy and his evaluation of the Greek thinkers that best represent the classical mind: Heraclitus, Democritus, Plato, and Aristotle. His early views on Greekphilosophy, traceable in the 1889 Dissertation on Lotze, were revised and formalized in "The Life of Reason", and finalized in his "Apologia pro mente sua" (1951). The principles that figure dominantly in Santayana's philosophy, materialism, scepticism, and the theory of essences, also pervade his (...) interpretation and critical treatment of Greekphilosophy. For all his admiration and love of Greekphilosophy, Santayana's naturalistic approach remained close to James' pragmatism. (shrink)
Catharine MacKinnon's investigation of the role of sexuality in the subordination of women is a logical culmination of radical feminist thought. If this is correct, the position of her work relative to radical feminism is analogous to the place Parmenides's work occupied in ancient Greekphilosophy. Critics of MacKinnon's work have missed their target completely and must engage her work in a different way if feminist theory is to progress past its current stalemated malaise.
This paper addresses two interrelated questions. The first question is our relation, as the modern westerners that we are, to Greekphilosophy in its historical context. The second question is the relation between Greek philosophical conceptions of the self and what we moderns take ourselves to be when we try to think about the world objectively. My inquiry is motivated by the belief that what a philosopher of the distant past can say to us is influenced by (...) our own independent viewpoint, a viewpoint which may enable us to use that philosopher as a contributor to debates of which he himself had no inkling. Greek philosophers were innocent of the Cartesian tradition and the problems it has generated concerning the connection, if any, between an individual subject of consciousness and the so-called 'external world'. However, I argue that early Greek speculation about the physical world was inward as well as outward looking. Their attempts to think about the world objectively raised issues about the nature of the self — the inquiring (or non-inquiring) subject — issues that, in the case of Heraclitus, are quite explicit. Following up my earlier point about linking modern viewpoints to ancient insights, I make a comparison beween parts of Thomas Nagel's book, The View from Nowhere, and the philosophy of Heraclitus. In particular, I argue that Heraclitus adumbrates a concept analogous to Nagel's 'objective self and shares some of Nagel's interests in integrating that perspective with the practice of being a person in the everyday world. In the final part of the paper I comment briefly on Plato's and Aristotle's criticism of Heraclitus, a criticism that, from a modern perspective, seems to me misconceived. I also offer the Stoic Emperor Marcus Aurelius, who was influenced by Heraclitus, as an excellent example of what it could mean to combine an objective viewpoint with one's ordinary humanity. More generally, the paper may be read as a defence of objectivity — not in the sense that we can hope to understand the world independently of our own concepts or culture (I sidestep any questions about objective truth), but in the sense, rather, that trying to get beyond an irreducibly personal view of things is a basic human propensity (property of the self) even though our use of it seems bound to be (and perhaps should be) selective. (shrink)
The Hegel Lectures Series Series Editor: Peter C. Hodgson -/- Hegel's lectures have had as great a historical impact as the works he himself published. Important elements of his system are elaborated only in the lectures, especially those given in Berlin during the last decade of his life. The original editors conflated materials from different sources and dates, obscuring the development and logic of Hegel's thought. The Hegel Lectures series is based on a selection of extant and recently discovered transcripts (...) and manuscripts. The original lecture series are reconstructed so that the structure of Hegel's argument can be followed. Each volume presents an accurate new translation accompanied by an editorial introduction and annotations on the text, which make possible the identification of Hegel's many allusions and sources. -/- Lectures on the History of Philosophy Volume II: GreekPhilosophy -/- Hegel's Lectures on the History of Philosophy offer one of the best points of entry to his philosophical system. The second volume (dating from 1825-6) covers a thousand years of ancient Greekphilosophy; this is the period to which Hegel devoted by far the most attention, and which he saw as absolutely fundamental for all that came after it. This edition sets forth clearly, and for the first time for the English reader, what Hegel actually said. It forms part of OUP's Hegel Lectures series, presenting accurate new translations accompanied by editorial introductions and annotations. -/- These lectures challenged the antiquarianism of Hegel's contemporaries by boldly contending that the history of philosophy is itself philosophy, not just history. It portrays the journey of reason or spirit through time, as reason or spirit comes in stages to its full development and self-conscious existence, through the successive products of human intellect and activity. Hegel's Lectures on the History of Philosophy proved to be extremely influential on the intellectual history of the past two centuries. These lectures are crucial to understanding Hegel's own systematic philosophy in its constructive aspect, as well as his views on the centrality of reason in human history and culture. The volume on GreekPhilosophy covers the first one thousand years, the period to which Hegel devoted by far the most attention, and which he saw as absolutely fundamental for all that came after it. This edition adapts the considerable editorial resources of the German edition that it translates, to the needs of the general reader as well as the serious scholar, so as to constitute an unparalleled resource on this topic in the English language. (shrink)
This article attempts to explore ancient Chinese philosophical thought by analyzing how pioneering Chinese thinkers made judgments and inferences, and compares it to ancient Greekphilosophy. It first addresses the starting-point and the object of cognition in Chinese ancient philosophy, then analyses how early thinkers construed definition and proposition, and finally discusses how they made inferences on the basis of definition and proposition. It points out that categorization is an important methodology in ancient Chinese philosophy, and (...) that rectification of names and the doctrine of the mean are key criteria in making judgments. (shrink)
This anthology looks at the early sages of Western philosophy and science who paved the way for Plato and Aristotle and their successors. Democritus's atomic theory of matter, Zeno's dazzling "proofs" that motion is impossible, Pythagorean insights into mathematics, Heraclitus's haunting and enigmatic epigrams-all form part of a revolution in human thought that relied on reasoning, forged the first scientific vocabulary, and laid the foundations of Western philosophy. Jonathan Barnes has painstakingly brought together the surviving Presocratic fragments in (...) their original contexts, utilizing the latest research and a major new papyrus of Empedocles. Translated and edited by Jonathan Barnes. (shrink)
Comparative philosophy has been interested in issues such as whether the familiar Western concepts of the soul and self can be applied in understanding Chinese philosophy about human selfhood and whether there are alternative Chinese modes of thinking about these concepts. I will outline a comparison of the main concerns of the Greeks and Chinese philosophers in their discussion about the soul and self, and examine some of the major comparative theories that are recently developed. The comparative discussion (...) is significant in helping us understand each tradition's views of soul and self in its own terms, and in identifying alternatives to familiar modes of thinking. However, we should avoid looking for simplified uniformity in each tradition and overgeneralizing the contrasts between China and Greece. (shrink)
In fourth-century Greece (BCE), the debate over the nature of philosophy generated a novel claim: that the highest form of wisdom is theoria, the rational 'vision' of metaphysical truths (the 'spectator theory of knowledge'). This book offers an original analysis of the construction of 'theoretical' philosophy in fourth-century Greece. In the effort to conceptualise and legitimise theoretical philosophy, the philosophers turned to a venerable cultural practice: theoria (state pilgrimage). In this practice, an individual journeyed abroad as an (...) official witness of sacralized spectacles. This book examines the philosophic appropriation and transformation of theoria, and analyses the competing conceptions of theoretical wisdom in fourth-century philosophy. By tracing the link between traditional and philosophic theoria, this book locates the creation of theoretical philosophy in its historical context, analysing theoria as a cultural and an intellectual practice. It develops a new, interdisciplinary approach, drawing on philosophy, history, and literary studies. (shrink)