Postmodern Aristotle

Cambridge Scholars Press (2012)

Abstract

The modern world was in part born as a reaction against Aristotelianism. However, the image of Aristotle to which modern philosophers reacted was partial, to say the least. Paradoxical though it may seem, today, more than twenty-three centuries on, we may now be in the most advantageous position for understanding the Stagirite's philosophy and applying it to contemporary problems. The present book contributes to the forming of an idea of Post-modern reason inspired by a constellation of Aristotelian concepts, such as prudence (phronesis), practical truth (aletheia praktike), science in act (episteme en energeiai), metaphor (metaphora), similarity (homoiosis) and the imitation-creation pair (mimesis-poiesis). They all form an interconnected network and together they make up an idea of reason that may prove suitable for the present. These concepts offer the most promising basis for undertaking a series of urgent reconciliations: of facts and values, of means and ends, of theoretical and practical reason, of intelligence and emotion. Aristotle's notions could help solve many dualisms of modern times. He offers a third way between identity and difference in ontology and politics, between algorithm and anarchism in methodology, between naïve realism and plain relativism in epistemology, between equivocity and univocity in language, between Enlightenment and Romanticism in culture... On the way, this shift facilitates the relationships between science, arts and ethics - the three parts of the sphere of culture which Modernity had separated - as well as the integration of the sphere of culture itself with the world of life.

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