Il terzo fascicolo del 2017 di "Rivista di Filosofia Neo-scolastica" ospita una sezione monografica "Categorie. Storia, struttura e modelli", a cura di Lorenzo Fossati, i cui contributi approfondiscono la storia e i problemi della questione delle categorie da Aristotele e Kant fino ai giorni nostri. - This monographic issue, entitled "Categories. History, Structures and Models" and edited by Lorenzo Fossati, investigates the history and problems concerning categories from Aristotle and Kant to the present day.
The question of categories is crucial in Kant’s philosophy and the later thought, in which it is exploited to recover, correct or oppose transcendental philosophy. Even though Bolzano is a fierce opponent of this philosophy, he does not devote much space to the thematic critique of the concept of «category». He deals with it in Aristotle and in Kant in §§ 118 and 119 of his Wissenschaftslehre, in the appendix to the Doctrine of the Elements, in which he offered his theory of «representations in themselves» or «ideas». The aim of this paper is to present such punctual criticisms and clarify their meaning and assumptions, thus delineating some peculiar concepts of Bolzano, based on which the notion of «summum genus» is originally rethought and any «deduction» is radically rejected.
The ontology of the Categories relies on several fundamental relations that obtain between beings. One of these is the relation of being-said-of. The most widespread view among commentators is that the relation of being-said-of amounts to essential predication. However, some relatively neglected textual evidence tells against such an interpretation and points towards a different account of the relation of being-said-of. On this alternative picture, while the relation of being-said-of is essential predication when it obtains between universals, it coincides with mere predication when it obtains between a universal and an individual. The relation of beingsaid-of turns out to be closely linked with paronymy: in most cases where a property (e.g. generosity) is in an individual, a paronymous universal (e.g. generous) is said of that individual. However, the alternative picture also faces difficulties. In conclusion, it remains unclear what position, if any, can be coherently attributed to Aristotle.
A categorical ontology is a general classification scheme arising from the analysis of the relation of ontological predication. In the last decades, Lowe proposed a specific ontological square which combines the distinction between universals and particulars, based on a relation of essential predication, and the distinction between attributes and substrates, based on a relation of attributive predication. In this paper I briefly contrast Lowe’s square with the classical Aristotelian square and argue that the framework proposed by Aristotle allows us to develop a better interpretation of the fundamental entities and relations that constitute the square.
In the Middle Ages, the transmission and the reception of Aristotle’s Categories, together with Porphyrius’s Isagoge, a work that had driven to a predominantly logical-linguistic approach, have led to a both extentional and intensional interpretation about categories. These exegesis found support also from second intentions doctrine and their relation with reality. The determining ontological status of categories moves in parallel with universals’ theories, while second intentions allow to understand the categories’ general character. Categories’ theory is based on lessical signification doctrine, associated with an ontology. Here we’ll examine Thomas Aquinas’, Henry of Ghent’s and John Duns Scotus’ positions.
In spite of so much time lapsed, the questions about categories discussed by Medieval philosophers are still alive. In this brief comment, I would like to pinpoint some of these topics and highlight their importance for the contemporary metaphysical debate. I will deal in particular with the relationship between categories and language.
The aim of this article is to analyse the theme of modality as a problem concerning the formation of judgments and categories. According to Kant’s Critique, every judgement is modal because in modality it is not the object to be judged, but a function, the judgment itself, its meaning, its value for the subject in the act of judging; thus, the modal judgment is not impure. The modal logical forms represent a reflection on the constituent functions of objectivity: the validity of the knowledge of the experience depends on this previous transcendental foundation. In this sense, the judgements of the class of modality have a gnoseological-epistemological function, namely a transcendental function. Modality (judgments, categories, schemas, postulates) attests how the composition of subject-predicate, their specific connection, is realized. The modal moment is thus a foundational moment in comparison with the other classes of judgment and with the conditions of experience in general. Kant gives the transcendental logic a foundational turn, which had not been recognized by formal logic. Critical ontology means namely to emphasizing the «relationship», that is the different way in which the same thing (phenomenon or noumenon) relates to the subject.
The aim of this paper is to examine the role that Kant assigned to the imagination, in the transcendental deduction of the categories. As it is known, this role is highly controversial: some scholars are convinced that the imagination has a function which is merely ancillary and subordinated to the intellect (and to the sensibility); while others retain that its role is relevant, even though the intellect alone is entitled to a place of honor in the first Critique. My point is that it is possible to argue that imagination has a crucial role in the deduction of the pure concepts of the intellect, precisely because the conceptual architecture of The Critique of Pure Reason is threefold and not simply twofold.
The theory of categories, developed starting from Kantian epistemology, repeats the Aristotelian model of predicative forms, in this way trying to provide an exhaustive outline of categorical forms. The purpose of Kant, however, fails because no predicate calculus, unlike the propositional calculus, can reach completeness. The classical Neo-Kantians (Cohen, Natorp, Cassirer) therefore introduce essential changes, including space and time within categorical range and grounding concepts and judgments on Principles or ‘Fundamental propositions’, to account for the relational structure of the categorical division. Nevertheless, these changes too do not solve the problem of intuition and individuation, which young Neo-Kantians (particularly Zocher, Hönigswald and Cramer) develop in the sense of a ‘transcendental semantics’ capable of mediating between principle and fact, criticism and system. Husserl and phenomenology bring to an end this semantic determination of categories through the eidetic intuition, the method of variation and the functioning intentionality, identifying in the temporal consciousness a new ‘logic of experience’.
In this paper I discuss Luca Guidetti’s paper about the notion of ‘category’ within the neo-Kantian and the phenomenological traditions. First, I summarize Guidetti’s paper and its underlying evaluation of neo-Kantianism. Then, I draw attention to the revision of the critical philosophy provided by the Marburg School, in order to show that it represents a significant antecedent for one of the most interesting positions expressed today in philosophy of science, that is to say Michael Friedman’s «dynamics of reason».
The article aims at a comparative view of the ways in which the issue of categories was dealt with in the context of classic linguistic philosophy, both in the ideal language and in the ordinary language tradition. Different ways of conceiving of categories are seen to be associated with different outlooks as to the method of (linguistic) philosophy. Some paradigmatic cases are examined: Gustav Bergmann, Rudolf Carnap, Willard Van Orman Quine, Gilbert Ryle. Contrasts as well as interferences among their views are taken into account.
The aim of this paper is to discuss Bergmann’s method of ideal language. According to Bergmann, philosophical questions – and, particularly, metaphysical ones – have to be solved by reflecting on the syntactical structure of the ideal language. This procedure should guarantee rigour and coherence to philosophy; however, this proposal seems to be puzzling. After shortly retracing Bergmann’s position, we argue that within it there seem to be conceptual tensions and that it is internally instable.
Aristoxenus conceived of harmonics as a demonstrative science. In his work of organization and systematization of musical knowledge, he was inspired by both the Aristotelian theory of science, including its adoption in biology, and the mathematical method of exposition. This article attempts to outline the structure of Elementa harmonica and throw light on the sources of the Aristoxenian epistemological approach. Aristoxenus assimilated the Aristotelian and mathematical idea of the intimate connection between science and demonstration and applied this idea in the musical field by working out an axiomatic and deductive model, which is suitable and peculiar to the scientific treatment of harmonics. In this way Aristoxenus made an original contribution to the shaping of axiomatization and deduction in classical Greece.
In the speculative project of Periphyseon, Eriugena sought to complete a ‘systematic’ description of the whole of reality (universitas), in relation with the full semantic extension of the term natura. Within this term one must include every res: from the first uncaused Cause, to the primordial causes, which are both eternal and created, to the finite effects. Eriugena entrusted the task of reconstructing this complex framework to the most refined tools of rationality: the liberal arts (above all dialectica), which reflect the order of reality; a theory of knowledge, which accentuates the organizing role of the knowing subject; the hierarchical conception of potency and act and the fulfillment of history in the restoration of the original entelechia. Only a proper understanding of these tools allows to define adequately the historical-speculative position of Eriugena’s work in the context of early medieval thought and thereby its correct relationship with the Platonic-Augustinian theoretical paradigm (vera philosophia).
The purpose of this article is to provide a reconstruction of the interpretation given by Galileo Galilei to the Aristotelian theory of demonstration.The doctrine of proof plays a central role in Galilei’s methodology and for this reason it is particularly important to deep the theories of the demonstration which had an impact on his education.Through the critical edition and the translation of the quaestio In quo conveniant et differant demonstratio propter quid et quia, et de huius divisione is possible to identify more precisely the role played in Galileo’s education by epistemological theories of Aristotle, Alexander of Aphrodisias, Averroes, Galen and by Commentators who taught at the University of Padua in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.
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