The Continuous and the Discrete: Ancient Physical Theories from a Contemporary Perspective

Review of Metaphysics 47 (3):648-649 (1994)

White presents an analysis of three ancient conceptions of spatial magnitude, time, and motion, namely, Aristotle's, the Stoics', and the quantum views. The greater part of the book deals with Aristotle, according to whom one cannot get magnitude from points. The alleged mistakes in his theory of motion melt away if one agrees with his ontology. In the second chapter White discusses Aristotle's conception of time and "a time". Despite the lack of adequate mathematical tools Aristotle had an amazing intuitive grasp of the concept of continuous motion. White sees a contrast between Aristotle and modern mathematics insofar as in the latter the concept of infinity is extended and magnitudes are sets of points. This difference of view has metaphysical roots.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0034-6632
DOI revmetaph199447339
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Labyrinth of Continua†.Patrick Reeder - 2018 - Philosophia Mathematica 26 (1):1-39.

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