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Five Views of definienda in Alexander’s Quaestiones 1.3 and 2.14

Five Views of definienda in Alexander’s Quaestiones 1.3 and 2.14 AbstractIn Quaestiones 1.3 and 2.14, Alexander presents a distinctly realist or essentialist view of the objects of definition, distinguished, on the one hand, from two types of realism rejected by Aristotle (definienda as separate forms and as particulars), and, on the other, from two types of conceptualism (non-essentialist and essentialist abstractivism) that probably belong within the Peripatetic tradition. The difference between Alexander’s view and essentialist abstractivism lies in his understanding of definienda not as the common concepts of things existing in the particulars, but as the common things conceived of as existing in the particulars. This paper offers a close reading of Quaest. 1.3, whose aim is to flesh out Alexander’s position vis-à-vis the objects of definition against the backdrop of the four rejected alternatives. The distinction between Alexander’s essentialism and the essentialist abstractivist notion of definienda is further explained in light of Quaest. 2.14. The amended Greek text of Quaest. 1.3 is appended with an English translation. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Elenchos de Gruyter

Five Views of definienda in Alexander’s Quaestiones 1.3 and 2.14

Elenchos , Volume 42 (2): 24 – Dec 20, 2021

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Publisher
de Gruyter
Copyright
© 2021 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston
ISSN
0392-7342
eISSN
2037-7177
DOI
10.1515/elen-2021-0018
Publisher site
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Abstract

AbstractIn Quaestiones 1.3 and 2.14, Alexander presents a distinctly realist or essentialist view of the objects of definition, distinguished, on the one hand, from two types of realism rejected by Aristotle (definienda as separate forms and as particulars), and, on the other, from two types of conceptualism (non-essentialist and essentialist abstractivism) that probably belong within the Peripatetic tradition. The difference between Alexander’s view and essentialist abstractivism lies in his understanding of definienda not as the common concepts of things existing in the particulars, but as the common things conceived of as existing in the particulars. This paper offers a close reading of Quaest. 1.3, whose aim is to flesh out Alexander’s position vis-à-vis the objects of definition against the backdrop of the four rejected alternatives. The distinction between Alexander’s essentialism and the essentialist abstractivist notion of definienda is further explained in light of Quaest. 2.14. The amended Greek text of Quaest. 1.3 is appended with an English translation.

Journal

Elenchosde Gruyter

Published: Dec 20, 2021

Keywords: definienda; Alexander of Aphrodisias; universals; abstraction; essentialism

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