Download Aristotle on the Sense-Organs by T. K. Johansen PDF

By T. K. Johansen

This booklet is a close research of Aristotle's conception of the experience organs. It appears in any respect 5 feel organs and exhibits how Aristotle's perspectives approximately them persist with from his perspectives approximately their functionality in conception. The publication additionally indicates how Aristotle's clarification of why we've experience organs is essentially varied from that of recent technology. The ebook may still entice readers in particular attracted to Aristotle's philosophy of brain and biology in addition to to these commonly attracted to feel notion.

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De an. II. I 4 l 5 b l 8 - 2 0 : TravToc y a p Ta 4>UCTiKa oxbuaTa if\s yuxfis o p y a v a , KCXI 11 On the question of Aristotle's fairness to the materialists, cf. Wardy (1990) 256-8 and Sorabji (1980) 178-9. KaOdcTrep TOC TWV £COGOV, OUTGO KOU TOC TCOV <|>UTCOV, COS evexa Tffc V^X^IS OVTOC. 32 EXPLANATION FROM THE TOP D O W N ing because of certain attributes that their matter has. Again, Aristotle uses the analogy with artefacts to make his point about the causes of natural beings. 12 If the wall has a foundation of stone, a middle structure of earth and some wooden posts on top, the materialists will say that the foundation is of stone because stone is the heaviest material and therefore sinks to the ground, whereas the earth is on top of the stone because it is lighter, and the posts come on top of all because wood is the lightest element of all.

34 APPLICATION OF TOP-DOWN EXPLANATION plant counts as being up and which part counts as being down depends on the function that the part serves in the plant. The function of the roots is to take in nourishment. The roots therefore correspond with the head in an animal. 14 This part, Aristotle says, is naturally the upper part of the organism. 15 The objection is symptomatic because it shows that for Aristotle it is the function and form of an organism that decides how we should describe its body and its parts.

7 Cf. I 642a9~i3 and Introduction. HOW TO EXPLAIN THE SENSE-ORGANS particular sort of artefact it is going to be turned into. ; they have a certain hardness, weight and durability, and so on. Some of these are attributes that make the materials suitable building materials. That is why the bricks and timber can be called a potential house. But the materials might also be suitable for other purposes than to build houses with. Whether or not they are in fact used to build a house depends on what the craftsman has in mind, what he intends to do with them.

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