Post-classical period witnessed intense debates on aspects of the Avicennan theory of science. Among them one set of discussions concerned the issue of subject matter (mabāhith al-mawdūʿ) in a science. They were raised by Ṣadr al-Sharīʿa (d. 747/1346) in the introduction of his al-Tawḍīh, a commentary on his legal theory text al-Tanqīḥ. Therein, he raised three questions: (1) whether the subject matter of a science can be multiple, (2) what restricting subject matter of a science means, and (3) whether one (...) thing can be the subject matter of multiple sciences. Taftāzānī (d. 792/1390), a proponent of the Avicennan theory, objected to Ṣadr al-Sharīʿa’s positions in his al-Talwīḥ, the most well-known supercommentary on al-Tawḍīh. The paper analyzes this debate on the issue of subject matter in sciences, and thus sheds light on the reception of an important aspect of the Avicennan theory of science in the postclassical period. (shrink)
In the eighth question of his Quaestiones de ente, the Late Medieval Theologian William Farinier tackles the issue of the attribute agreement we normally experience between individuals of the same species. The sub ect of his discussion is whether the specific unity we attribute to particulars is something of which they are really endowed with, regardless of any cognitive activity. In sharp contrast with realist thinkers, such as Duns Scotus and Francis Meyronnes, he claims that this is not to be (...) the case. His idea is that specific unity is ontologically mind-dependent, while semantically mind-independent. This claim is not entirely original, though. As it turns out, Farinier makes large use of Auriol's view the matter to shape his own one. His explicit endorsement to some of the most typical aureolistic theses seems to make him one of the few known (for now) full-fledged aureolistae. (shrink)
This article explores Bonaventure’s metaphysical account of creation, which holds that at the heart of every creature is a sort of metaphysical vanity. That vanity stems from the exigencies of a creation metaphysics in which the creator-God draws every creature out of nothingness into being. But, while God’s creative act sustains the creature in being, the nothingness from which God preserves creation, on Bonaventure’s view, always remains a feature of creation’s metaphysical constitution. In short, for the Seraphic Doctor, because nothingness (...) always resides in creation, creation itself is fundamentally vain. Since vanity is a central theme in the book of Ecclesiastes, concerning which Bonaventure has left us a commentary, I argue that the metaphysical vision he employs to illuminate the nature of vanity as it pertains to creation—both within his biblical commentary and beyond—can be properly described as a “metaphysic of Ecclesiastes.”. (shrink)
The main claim I defend in this paper is that Robert Kilwardby, a thirteenth-century Dominican philosopher, construed bodily pain as a fully-fledged intentional state of the sensory soul. To prove this, I first examine Kilwarby’s account of how pain comes to be and how the sensory soul experiences it. I then show that pain cannot be reduced to a feeling the sensory soul experiences for the simple reason that pain has representational content, and is thus also directed at something.
Peter Auriol argues that sensation and intellection are both passive and active. They are passive insofar as they involve the reception of species or impressions of extra-mental objects. They are active insofar as both senses and intellect process these species and produce an intentional object. The way in which the senses and the intellect receive and process their own impressions is quite different, though. While perception is beyond our control, Auriol claims that the imagination, and the activity of the agent (...) and possible intellect depend on an act of the will. His idea is that the will pushes the intellect to focus on one of the impressions it receives from external objects, so that the corresponding impression is allowed to be imprinted in the intellect itself and the relevant concept formed. This paper examines the role that Auriol attributes to the will in our intellectual cognition, inasmuch as it is able to determine both (i) what kind of impressions can be picked and then embedded into the mind and, (ii) consequently, which concepts the intellect will form. My view is that, by envisioning the intellect and the will as already interacting during the process of concept formation, and not just during that of choice-making, Auriol provides an account of the intellect and the will strongly integrated with one another, thus offering a unitary vision of our cognitive life. (shrink)
Le présent article entend aborder la critique de l’intellect agent de Durand de Saint-Pourçain (v.1275-1334) et l’une des réactions immédiates suscitées par celle-ci, que l’on trouve dans les Evidentiae contra Durandum de Durandellus. Après une brève présentation de ce texte et de certains enjeux philologiques reliés à l’étude de la noétique de Durand et de ses adversaires, nous proposons une analyse de certains arguments centraux de Durand contre l’intellect agent et de ceux que leur oppose Durandellus. Ce faisant, nous entrons (...) en dialogue avec Serge-Thomas Bonino, seul commentateur à s’être jusqu’ici intéressé au débat entre Durandellus et Durand au sujet de l’intellect agent, et contestons certaines de ses analyses et conclusions. (shrink)
This paper examines the attribution to Eckhart of the unpublished collationes contained in the MS Bernkastel-Kues, Bibliothek des St. Nikolaus-Hospitals 21. Eckhart’s authorship was excluded by Koch, but is plausible from the point of view of the history of the manuscript tradition. The paper announces the discovery of a series of similar collationes in a Lüneburg manuscript of Franciscan origin and highlights, through the edition of the texts relating to Advent, some parallels between both works, probably depending on the use (...) of a common source. (shrink)
This volume contains the first critical edition and translation of Barlaam of Seminara's fourteenth century treatise Ethics According to the Stoics , along with a series of interpretative essays explaining its content and context. Barlaam's text is the earliest interpretative work written on Stoic ethics, a product of the burgeoning Italian Renaissance but also drawing on Barlaam's experience in the Byzantine intellectual world of Constantinople. Intriguingly, it offers a radically different account of the Stoic theory of emotions to the one (...) known from other sources, possibly taken from sources accessible to Barlaam but now lost. The volume includes interpretative essays on each of the two books of Barlaam's treatise, along with a biographical introduction and an essay setting out the wider context of the reception of Stoicism in the Middle Ages and early Renaissance. (shrink)
[Work in progress.] According to standard late medieval Christian thought, humans in heaven are unable to sin, having been “confirmed” in their goodness; and, nevertheless, are more free than humans are in the present life. The rise of voluntarist conceptions of the will in the late thirteenth century made it increasingly difficult to hold onto both claims. Peter Olivi suggested that the impeccability of the blessed was dependent upon a special activity of God upon their wills and argued that this (...) external constraint upon their wills did not eliminate their freedom. Later voluntarists largely agreed with Olivi in attributing the confirmation of the blessed to be dependent upon God’s activity in some way, but disputed the means by which and the extent to which the wills of those in heaven could be said to retain their freedom. This paper will examine various attempts made to either harmonize these two claims or else to soften the blow of rejecting one of them; among the authors surveyed will be Peter John Olivi, John Duns Scotus, Henry of Harclay, William of Ockham, Walter Chatton, and Margurite Porete. (shrink)
L. Gazziero, « Dante », in M. Lewis and D. Rose (ed.), The Bloomsbury Italian Philosophy Reader, London, Bloomsbury, 2022, p. 29-42: Even if Dante's work involves a fair amount of autobiographical material and occasionally fashions itself as a record of personal experiences, his writings reveal surprisingly few facts about his life. With one exception though, etc.
In hindsight, it is not surprising that the exegesis of Aristotle’s Sophistici elenchi developed into one of the most substantial parts of the Latin commentary tradition. To make a long story short, in its customary capacity as the art of arts and the science of sciences, medieval logic was primarily concerned with discerning the true from the false in arguments as they occur in natural, ordinary speech as opposed to the more formalised parlance later logicians will resort to. It makes (...) perfect sense, then, that medieval logicians paid special attention to everything that threatens sound reasoning and that prevents us from speaking the truth. Indeed, they were second to none and better than most at exposing and elucidating arguments’ flaws and shortcomings. After all, as John Buridan – faithful to a long and illustrious tradition – aptly put it, «rooting out errors» is logic’s first order of business. As early as the 1140s, Aristotle’s Sophistici elenchi provided the most fertile ground for such keen interest in fallacies; which, in turn, explains etc. This much is uncontroversial or, at any rate, can withstand any amount of scrutiny we care to throw at it. Courtesy – first and foremost – of Sten Ebbesen, whose long-standing interest in medieval writings on bad arguments has turned the Byzantine and Latin aftermath of Aristotle’s Sophistici elenchi into well-charted territory, by all standards. The Anonymus Cantabrigiensis has played no small part in shaping this picture. As a matter of fact, time and again over the last forty years or so, quotes and insights from the anonymous work have kept showing up in Ebbesen’s editions and studies: since he first discovered the commentary in the late 1970s and brought it to the general attention, Ebbesen has routinely drawn on the Anonymus as an early witness of the circulation of Aristotelian logical works and related texts, as a convenient illustration of major trends and distinctive features of the Latin literature on fallacies, and as a sensible interpreter in his own right. (shrink)
Multiple generality has long been known to cause confusion. For example, “Everyone has a donkey that is running” has two readings: either (i) there is a donkey, owned by everyone, and it is running; or (ii) everyone owns some donkey or other, and all such donkeys run. Medieval logicians were acutely aware of such ambiguities, and the logical problems they pose, and sought to sort them out. One of the most ambitious undertakings in this regard is a pair of massive (...) diagrams (magnae figurae) which map out the logical interrelations of two sets of doubly-general forms. These appear in a fourteenth-century MS of John Buridan’s Summulae de Propositionibus. In this paper, I present these diagrams, and determine the truth conditions of their different forms. To that end, I have developed a bespoke system of diagrams to display their truth conditions. As we will see, such forms present significant difficulties for an all-encompassing account of the role form plays in logic. Accordingly, they can tell us important things about the role logical form plays in Buridan’s account of logical foundations. (shrink)
Whereas several researches have been devoted to Auriol’s philosophical and theological works in the last fifty years, Auriol’s sermons have been basically neglected. The aim of this paper is to partially fill this gap, by focusing on one of Auriol’s sermons: the so-called De Compassione Virginis Sermo. The main argument defended here is that, while put into poetic and rhetorical language, Auriol’s theological insights lose nothing of their theoretical sharpness. They rather acquire an unexpected clarity and power of persuasion, of (...) which the De Compassione Virginis Sermo proves to be a remarkable example. In this regard, analyzing the formal structure of this sermon and examining the manner in which some of Auriol’s most notable tenets are presented there will provide an unusual, but still useful way to approach his rich thought. (shrink)
This paper analyzes Paul of Venice’s theory of measurement of natural properties and changes. The main sections of the paper correspond to Paul’s analysis of the three types of accidental changes, for which the Augustinian philosopher sought to provide rules of measurement. It appears that Paul achieved an original synthesis borrowing from both Parisian and Oxfordian sources. It is also argued that, on top of this theoretical synthesis, Paul managed to elaborate a quite original theory of intensive properties that marks (...) him out not only from the nominalist framework of his Parisian sources but also from the usual realist treatments of the problem. Finally, it is shown that, to a certain extent, Paul undertook to apply the mathematical and logical tools inherited from the Calculatores tradition to empirical problems of natural philosophy, leading to reevaluate his role in the evolution of scientific thought in early 15th-century Italy. (shrink)
This paper investigates how later medieval intellectuals dealt with perspectiva – the medieval discipline of optics, which had seen considerable popularity in Latin Europe since the 13th century and was epitomized in several “books of knowledge” of differing scopes, levels of difficulty and intended audience. This paper is focused narrowly on one of these intellectuals – Reimbotus de Castro (fl. 1350s–1380s), who was not only personal physician to the Roman Emperor Charles IV but was also a diligent copyist and abbreviator (...) of many quadrivial and medical texts, and the owner of several codices now kept in the Bibliotheca Palatina. One of these codices, Pal. lat. 1380, includes two optical treatises copied by Reimbot himself. A closer reading of these texts, hitherto unnoticed by historians of medieval science, provides fresh insight into the reception of optical knowledge in the intellectual milieu of Paris in the 1360s, when Reimbot resided here. The first text is Reimbot’s reportatio of lectures on the famous optical textbook Perspectiva communis by John Peckham; the second is Reimbot’s redaction of the unknown optical compendium Perspectiva cum sit una. Finally, this paper addresses the issue of why optics was interesting at all for people at the intersection of the scholarly and courtly communities like Reimbot (and late medieval scholars generally). It is suggested that medieval optics, being useful for astronomical observations, could be considered a sort of auxiliary discipline for astrology and astrological medicine. (shrink)
Medieval and early modern devotional works rarely receive serious treatment from philosophers, even those working in the subfields of philosophy of religion or the history of ideas. In this article, I examine one medieval devotional work in particular—the Middle High German image- and verse-program, Christus und die minnende Seele (CMS)—and I argue that it can plausibly be viewed as a form of medieval public philosophy, one that both exhibited and encouraged philosophical innovation. I address a few objections to my proposal—namely, (...) that CMS is neither public enough nor that it counts as proper philosophy—and I attempt to defend CMS’s public philosophical credentials in light of these objections. I conclude with a brief discussion of how devotional texts like CMS can help us do innovative public philosophy today. (shrink)
Beginning in the 1990s, the medieval historiography has devoted increasing attention to the presence of thought experiments in the medieval philosophical sources. Following the line drawn by King, Perler, Grellard and Marenbon studies, this paper aims to use the concept of thought experiment as an historiographical category to explore the issues of Peter Damian’s dilemma, in the chapter I of De divina omnipotentia, about the capacity of the divine power to restore the virginity of a maiden who has lost it. (...) In this perspective, the case of the virgin appears as a counterfactual scenario, that makes us understand how the question is not metaphysical but fundamentally epistemological. Peter Damian is not discussing about possible boundaries of God’s nature: he is rather arguing about the inability of the dialectic arguments to explain the omnipotence, in an attempt to define the cognitive and linguistic modes under which the human intellect could comprehend the virgin’s dilemma. The crucial step is the shift from possibilitas – intended as a statistical approach to the possible as “potential” – to potentia as a metaphysical attribute, regardless of her actualization: in this way, Peter Damian lifts the question up from the level of the human will, which often fails to grasp his objects, to the divine form of the will, which unfailingly achieves his objectives. (shrink)
Die Auseinandersetzung mit Aristoteles und der aristotelischen Tradition war in der frühen Neuzeit geprägt durch eine Spannung zwischen polemischer Ablehnung und impliziter Weiterführung oder gar expliziter Zustimmung. Einerseits setzten sich Bacon, Descartes, Malebranche, Hobbes, Locke und zahlreiche andere ›moderne‹ Philosophen, die von der mechanistischen Physik beeinflusst waren, ganz entschieden von aristotelischen Prinzipien und Erklärungsmodellen ab. Allerdings beschäftigten sie sich kaum mit den Werken des Aristoteles, sondern mit spätscholastischen Kompendien. Daher richtete sich ihre Kritik eher gegen spätmittelalterliche Transformationen oder Verformungen des (...) Aristotelismus als gegen Aristoteles selbst. Andererseits wurden die Schriften des Aristoteles an den Universitäten weiterhin gelesen und kommentiert, und aristotelische Autoren versuchten, Kernstücke der Metaphysik – etwa den Hylemorphismus und die Substanztheorie – gegen die zunehmende Kritik zu verteidigen. (shrink)
This essay analyses Peter Damian’s idea of perfection, by taking into account his texts devoted to the eremitic conversatio avellanita: in particular, Epistles 18, 50, and 109. It answers to the following working question: how is it possible to achieve an ‘angelic’ condition? Particular attention is paid to the ideas of time, space and ascesis.
This essay examines the way in which the modal concept of necessity was discussed and analyzed in some eleventh- and early twelfth-century sources, such as Peter Damian’s De divina omnipotentia, Anselm of Canterbury’s Cur deus homo and several anonymous commentaries on Aristotle’s De interpretatione that were presumably composed in the first two decades of the twelfth century by logicians connected to William of Champeaux’s and Peter Abelard’s milieu. My aim is to offer a comparison of these different sources with respect (...) to their use of the Boethian distinction between two types or kinds of necessity, namely, the “absolute” or “simple” necessity that is involved in statements like “God is necessarily immortal” or “it is necessary for humans to be animals”, and the “conditional” or “temporal” necessity that is at stake when we say, for instance, that someone necessarily walks when he is walking. (shrink)
The presence of quotations from the Laus heremiticae vitae contained in Peter Damian’s letter 28 in Paradiso XXI has led scholars to claim that Dante was familiar with the writings of the hermit and cardinal who lived in the 11th century. Instead, the author believes that Dante had only read the Laus heremiticae vitae, which circulated independently of the other works of Peter Damian, whose writings were otherwise unknown to Alighieri. This conclusion is reached on the basis of the poor (...) quality of the information Dante offers on Peter Damian’s biography, which derives from the traditions of Ravenna and not from Fonte Avellana, where he could have found the manuscripts of the hermit and cardinal’s works. (shrink)
The epistle 49 by Peter Damian contains an original allegorical interpretation of the Jewish Sabbath as a day of rest, enriched by a mystical exegesis of the biblical Hexameron, in which the six days of creation correspond to the inner journey of man called to intimately unite with God. Peter Damian expresses this process of deification through the two images of man as microcosm and sovereign of creation and man as temple of God. The main source of Damian’s text seems (...) to be the De natura hominis by Nemesius of Emesa, which he knows thanks to the translation of Alfanus I of Salerno, one of the recipients of the epistle: this is confirmed by textual evidences, but also by a preliminary historical and historiographic reconstruction of the clue of friendship that binds Peter Damian to the archbishop of Salerno. (shrink)
This article proposes an analysis of the use and value of the terms ‘philosophia’ and ‘philosophus’ in Peter Damian’s works. Despite a remarkable number of ‘negative’ occurrences, the two words are also used in a ‘positive’ sense, especially in the sermo VI, devoted to the figure of Saint Eleuchadius, a pagan philosopher who converted himself to the Christian truth and put his intellectual competencies at the service of the Church. Contradicting the standard image of Peter Damian as ‘anti-dialectician’, Eleuchadius’ case (...) shows how the cardinal-bishop of Ostia could accept the idea of a Christian philosopher, following the Augustinian interpretation of the biblical “Gold of the Egyptians”. (shrink)
The spread of the reform found one of its protagonists in the hermit and Cardinal Bishop of Ostia, Peter Damian. An example worthy of case-study is the Gallic mission as apostolic legate in 1063. The most complete report of this journey was written by an anonymous disciple. This perspective allows to observe Damian’s communication strategies and the different methods used referring to the various interlocutors. The cause of the apostolic legation was the help request from Hugh, abbot of Cluny, for (...) the pressures suffered by the Bishop of Macon. The occasion was propitious from the point of view of the cardinal bishop to expand his network of personal and institutional relationships and to legitimize the papal supremacy. He proceeded to France, summoned a council at Chalon-sur-Saône and proved the justice of the contentions of Cluny. Despite the lack of historiographical success, this work remains an extremely useful source for studying a man who made his ars rethorica a powerful weapon in the service of the reform. (shrink)
Peter Damian’s letter 119 De divina omnipotentia is characterized by two main issues: the dilemma about the God’s capacity to restore virginity to a woman and the question about the possibility of undoing the past. Despite the interweaving between these topics, they have to be distinguished in several respects. Aim of the paper will be, firstly, to isolate the two questions, starting with their textual loci; secondly, to focus on the dilemma about the divine capacity to undoing the past, showing (...) that the key of Peter Damian’s argument is the concept of eternity as an epistemic principle, that allows him to define the omnipotence, in the case of the action on temporal necessity, as a sort of second level property of God; finally, to compare the Damian’s solution with some contemporary theories, developed during the debate on omnipotence in the second half of the 20th century, in order to find continuity and discontinuity factors that can help to better understand the coherence and effectiveness of medieval and contemporary arguments. (shrink)
Peter Damian’s epistle 28, usually called Dominus vobiscum, shows a complex theological discussion. In fact, the author intertwines different subjects: the reform of the Church, the exaltation of monasticism, and, in particular, the primacy of the eremitical life. However, what is central in Peter Damian’s discourse is the Eucharistic sacrament, which the author considers from the standpoint of a theological sensitivity centered on the liturgical dimension of the celebration and on its spiritual and religious value. This contribution analyses Peter Damian’s (...) treatment of the Eucharistic sacrament, placing it in the historical-theological and doctrinal context of the disputes on the sacrament that animated the Church since the mid-eleventh century. (shrink)
Dominus Vobiscum is undoubtedly one of Peter Damian’s most original works, and has experienced a renewed interest thanks to the re-emergence of the ecclesiology of communion around Vatican II, but in-depth studies of the work as a whole are missing and its sources seem quite limited. In this analysis of the text and its argumentative structure, the conceptual development is built on the dialectic of contrasts, starting from the binomial of “solitudo pluralis” and “multitudo singularis”, typical of the hermit. The (...) theme is unfolded in its pneumatological, Christological and ecclesiological aspects. A formal analysis seems to demonstrate that the theses presented by Peter Damian are mainly the result of the power of rhetoric, which he undoubtedly mastered. (shrink)
In the second half of the eleventh century, monastic culture found the theoretical support for the project of ecclesiastical reform in which it participates in the ratio fidei, in the enhancement of the sciences and in the refinement of argumentative techniques, with which to adapt the behaviour of Christians to the Truth of the Mysteries and to the reality of the sacraments. The reform project that supports the need of the institutional Church to restore the powers and moral credit lost (...) in the last two centuries conflicts in several places with a more radical and universalistic conception of the Church as the people of God. And the stakes of this conflict must be sought not in a theoretical aspect but in the defence or downsizing of the Church’s magisterial function. In this context, Pier Damiani’s participation in the debate on Judaism manifests at least three general aspects, in addition to a constructive attitude on the relationship with cultural otherness. In the first place he confirms the attitude of monastic culture to the theological use of the arts; secondly, he explicitly identifies an ancillary role for reason with respect to faith; finally, he implicitly clarifies the ideological nature of the internal oppositions of the reformer movement. (shrink)
In literature Peter Damian has been often presented as an anti-dialectic thinker. Over time this statement has been subjected to careful historiographical revision. Today it is commonly accepted that the distinction between dialectic and anti-dialectic thinkers only partially describes the state of philosophy in the eleventh century. In fact, the relation between faith and reason is complex in Damian. The purpose of this paper is to reconsider this relation in the light of the significance Damian attributes to the notion of (...) contradiction. Reason must respect the principle of non-contradiction not only when it describes the natural world, but also when it explores the dimension of the mysteries of faith. (shrink)
This paper comprises two parts. The first part is an introduction to Auriol’s moderate conceptualism, as it is presented in his Commentary on Book II of the Sentences, distinction 9, question 2, article 1. The second part is an edition of the text. In the introduction, I focus on Auriol’s use of the noetic tool of connotation. My thesis, in particular, is that connotation is a necessary prerequisite to his moderate conceptu- alism. To this purpose, the first part of this (...) introduction will be devoted to a brief presentation of Auriol’s conceptualism. In the second part, Auriol’s theory of essential predication will be presented. In the third part, I will present my claim that Auriol’s theory of essential predication can only be made sense of when read against the background of his theory of connotation as applied to intellectual cognition. Finally, I will offer a collation of Auriol’s Commentary on Book II of the Sentences, dis- tinction 9, question 2, article 1, obtained by collating eight manuscripts, which hand down Auriol’s text, that is, Firenze, Biblioteca nazionale centrale, ms. Conv. Soppr. B.6.121, Firenze, ms. Conv. Soppr. A. 3.120, Napoli, Biblioteca nazionale, ms. VII.C.3, Padova, Biblioteca Antoniana, ms. 161, scaff. ix, Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, ms. latin 15867; Pelplin, Biblioteka Seminarium duchownego, ms. 46/85, Vaticano (Città del), Biblioteca Apostolica, ms. Borgiano 404, Vaticano (Città del), Biblioteca Apostolica, ms. Vat. lat. 942. (shrink)
_Sense Perception_ is the first part of the trilogy _Forms of Representation in the Aristotelian Tradition_. It investigates some of the most complex and intriguing aspects of theories of perception in the Greek, Latin, and Arabic reception of Aristotle’s psychology.
_Concept Formation_ is the final part of the trilogy _Forms of Representation in the Aristotelian Tradition_. It investigates some of the most perplexing and provocative discussions on conceptual thinking in the Greek, Latin, and Arabic reception of Aristotle’s psychology.
_Dreaming_ is the second part of the trilogy _Forms of Representation in the Aristotelian Tradition_. It investigates some of the most fascinating and enduring discussions on dreams in the Greek, Latin, and Arabic reception of Aristotle’s psychology.
This article deals with the most relevant philosophical side of Albert the Great’s analysis of alchemy, aimed at clarifying what alchemical transmutation consists in and whether this process can ultimately be accomplished by men. The Dominican master handles the problem differently in the earlier commentary on Lombardus’ Libri Sententiarum and in works like the De mineralibus, in which a more mature idea of the connection between art and nature is developed. In this respect, Albert’s interpretation intersects with Avicenna’s De congelatione, (...) a fundamental text for the Latin medieval debate on alchemy, whose reception has shaped his understanding of the alchemical art. The Dominican master gradually assumes a more lenient position towards the claims of the alchemical process of transmutation, which he explains by resorting to the similitudes between alchemy and medicine and the comparison of artificial transmutation with natural processes such as the generatio ex putrefactione and the natural formation of minerals. (shrink)
Complexe significabilia are the significate of whole sentences, irreducible to what is signified by categorematic sub-sentential components. It has been propounded firstly by Adam Wodeham. Wodeham construes his argument for the postulation of complexe significabilia as a middle way between William of Ockham and Walter Chatton. According to Wodeham, Ockham’s view implies a reflexive theory of mental acts, which goes against the phenomenology of the act of assent. Moreover, it leads to an anti-realist epistemology. We need therefore things outside the (...) mind to be object of the act of assent, which is also the conclusion reached by Chatton. However, against Chatton, Wodeham argues that things signified by the categorematic component of sentences cannot be the object of assent. In effect, sentences with different syncategorematic structures, but with the same categorematic components, would correspond to the same propositional attitude in Chatton’s framework, which is an unwelcome consequence. The result is that we need to postulate that the objects of assent are outside the mind, contra Ockham, that are not signified by sentential categorematic components, contra Chatton, but are irreducibly signified by the whole sentences. (shrink)
In this paper, I explore one line of argument for the Humean Theory of Reasons, the view that all normative reasons are based on desires. Then, I suggest a way to block that argument inspired by Aquinas’s discussions on choice, will, and indeterminacy of reason alone.
A linguagem mental explica o caráter significativo das linguagens falada e escrita: seus elementos e estrutura são identificados através de critérios teóricos que servem a este fim. Estes critérios parecem manter uma certa indeterminação em relação aos elementos e estruturas da linguagem mental, se se espera que eles decidam entre diferentes formas de apresentação possíveis. Esta expectativa, contudo, não é razoável dentro da filosofia ockhamiana. A teoria da linguagem mental pode desempenhar os papéis teóricos a ela destinados sem determinar a (...) forma que deveria ter uma linguagem canônica que a apresentasse. Há no entanto uma outra indeterminação na forma da proposição mental, relativa a ocorrências de proposições, que efetivamente ocorre nos textos ockhamianos : proposições mentais podem ser atos mentais simples e ter uma semântica composicional. Esta tese surpreendente nos lembra que embora a análise semântica que identifica estruturas da linguagem mental descreva algo que tem uma realidade psicológica, a descrição psicológica ela mesma deve recorrer a outros elementos da filosofia ockhamiana, e em particular, sua teoria dos atos mentais. (shrink)