Aristotle on How One Becomes What One Is

Review of Metaphysics 53 (2):363 - 382 (1999)
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THE DE ANIMA POSES CERTAIN CHALLENGES to those readers who would like to see Aristotle self-bound to the principles of logographic necessity proposed by his teacher Plato. When held as a standard, Socrates’ call in the Phaedrus for a logos organized like a living being with a body of its own, whose organized parts are to be composed in fitting relation to each other and to the whole, is a call that seems to reveal an Aristotle who lacks a certain mastery of the written word, or who lacks a certain reverence for teachers. The unity of the De Anima is as much open to question as the unity of the soul of which it speaks. Yet Aristotle would have it that “in our inquiry into the soul, in going forward, we must be thoroughly perplexed.”



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Michael Golluber
Saint John's College

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