Aristotle and the problem of human knowledge


Authors
William Wians
University of Notre Dame
Abstract
I shall argue that, according to Aristotle, the knowledge we may attain is profoundly qualified by our status as human knowers. Throughout the corpus, Aristotle maintains a separation of knowledge at the broadest level into two kinds, human and divine. The separation is not complete—human knowers may enjoy temporarily what god or the gods enjoy on a continuous basis; but the division expresses a fact about humanity's place in the cosmos, one that imposes strict conditions on what we may know, with what degree of certainty, and in what areas. While passages bearing on human knowledge are familiar, looking at them collectively and in comparison with certain other well known Aristotelian doctrines may significantly affect how we understand the goals of his philosophy and why our hopes for reaching them must be limited.
Keywords INTELLECT   KNOWLEDGE   SCEPTICISM   GOD   ARISTOTLE   PLATO
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1163/187254708X282286
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 43,049
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Aristotle's First Principles.T. H. Irwin - 1991 - Journal of Philosophy 88 (9):489-496.
Aristotle: Posterior Analytics.John W. Konkle & Jonathan Barnes - 1995 - Philosophical Quarterly 45 (181):510.
Aristotle: The Desire to Understand.Jonathan LEAR - 1988 - Cambridge University Press.
Aristotle: The Desire to Understand.Richard Kraut & Jonathan Lear - 1991 - Philosophical Review 100 (3):522.

View all 24 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
49 ( #166,647 of 2,260,175 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #656,535 of 2,260,175 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature