Individual and Essence in Aristotle's Metaphysics

Paideia (Special Aristotle Edition):75-85 (1978)
Aristotle's claim in Metaphysics Z.6 that "each substance is the same as its essence" has long puzzled commentators. For it seems to conflict with two other Aristotelian theses: (1) primary substances are individuals (e.g., Socrates and Callias), and (2) essences are universals (e.g., Man and Horse). Three traditional solutions to this difficulty are considered and rejected. Instead, to make the Z.6 equation consistent with (1) and (2), I propose that it be interpreted to be making something other than a straightforward identity claim. Callias is the same as his essence in the sense that to be identical to Callias is to be the same man as Callias (where Man is the essence of Callias). In general, x is identical to y if, and only if, x and y are the same E (where E specifies the "what it is to be" for x, i.e., the essence of x). So each of Socrates and Callias is the same as his essence, and Man is that essence, but Socrates and Callias are not identical, for they are not the same man.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 29,511
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
A Puzzle Concerning Matter and Form.Kit Fine - 1994 - In T. Scaltsas, David Charles & Mary Louise Gill (eds.), Unity, Identity, and Explanation in Aristotle's Metaphysics. Oxford University Press. pp. 13--40.
Duns Scotus on Singular Essences.Peter King - 2005 - Medioevo 30:111-137.
Substance and Essence in Aristotle. [REVIEW]S. Marc Cohen - 1992 - Philosophical Review 101:838-40.
De Essentia.Alvin Plantinga - 1979 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 7:101-121.
Aquinas' Transcendences to Aristotle in the Doctrine of Essence.Duan Dezhi - 2007 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 2 (4):572-582.
Essence, Necessity, and Explanation.Kathrin Koslicki - 2012 - In Tuomas E. Tahko (ed.), Contemporary Aristotelian Metaphysics. Cambridge University Press. pp. 187--206.
The Epistemology of Essence.Tuomas E. Tahko - forthcoming - In Alexander Carruth, S. C. Gibb & John Heil (eds.), Ontology, Modality, Mind: Themes from the Metaphysics of E. J. Lowe. Oxford University Press.
Metaphysics as the First Philosophy.Tuomas E. Tahko - 2013 - In Edward Feser (ed.), Aristotle on Method and Metaphysics. Palgrave-Macmillan. pp. 49-67.
On the Essence of Substance as the Individual.Makoto Ozaki - 2007 - The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 7:185-189.
Added to PP index

Total downloads
121 ( #41,114 of 2,180,720 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #104,776 of 2,180,720 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums