Aristotle the Man.ppt

Document Sample
Aristotle the Man.ppt Powered By Docstoc

       384 – 322 BC
Stagira,Thrace / Macedonia
Introduction to Aristotle:
An Historical Perspective
       Russell’s Two Views
  With any important philosopher, says
 Russell, it is necessary to study him in
 two ways:

• with reference to his predecessors,
• and with reference to his successors.
• In reference to his predecessors, Russell
  point out that Aristotle

             came at the end
         of the creative period
           in Greek thought.
             After his death
          it was 2000 years
       before the world produced
            any philosopher

who could be regarded as approximately
               his equal.
   Philosophical Perspective
Ever since the beginning of the 17 century,
 almost every serious intellectual advance
             has had to begin

          with an attack on some
          Aristotelian doctrine.
Aristotle’s Life
               Early Years
• born, probably in
  384 B.C., at Stagira
  in Thrace.
     His father had
  inherited the position
  of family physician
      to the king of

• At 18, Aristotle became a pupil of Plato at
  the Academy in Athens.
• He remained at the Academy for ~20
  years, until the death of Plato in 348-7 BC.

• He then travelled for a time,
• and married.
             Return Home
• In 343 B.C. he was invited to return to the
  Macadonian court to become tutor to
  Alexander, then 13
• Although this was considered late to begin
  the education of a potential king. Aristotle
  tutored Alexander for 3 years.
• At age 16, Alexander was appointed
Back to Athens
   From 335 B.C. to 323 B.C.
  Aristotle lived again in Athens.

 It was during these twelve years
               that he
       • founded his school
  • and wrote most of his books.
      Aristotle & Alexander

  The general consensus seems to be that

• Aristotle had little influence on Alexander
• Neither was particularly fond of the other
• Alexander was not particularly fond of
  learning or of philosophy.
      Alexander & Aristotle
     It is more surprising, says Russell,

• that Alexander and his father King Phillip
  had so little influence on Aristotle,
whose speculations on politics were blandly
  oblivious of the fact that the era of City
  States had given way to the era of
Phillip of Macedon’s Conquest of Mainland
   359 BC                     336 BC
Russell on Alexander

           • A. W. Benn says:
            "It would be
            unfortunate if
            philosophy had no
            better testimonial to
            show for herself than
            the character of
            Alexander. . . .
Arrogant, drunken, cruel, vindictive, and grossly
  superstitious, he united the vices of a Highland
  chieftain to the frenzy of an Oriental despot."

          Russell reminds us
           but for Alexander,
the whole tradition of Hellenic civilization
      might well have perished.
        Aristotle is Different . . .

• Aristotle, as a philosopher, is different
  because he was first to write like a

• his treatises are systematic,
• his discussions are divided into heads,
• he is a professional teacher, not an
  inspired prophet.
   Aristotle the Scholar
     His work is
      • critical,
      • careful,
    • pedestrian,

• without any trace of
 Bacchic enthusiasm.
      continue to

• Aristotle’s Metaphysics
   • Aristotle’s Ethics
   • Aristotle’s Logic

Shared By: