Order in Multiplicity: Homonymy in the Philosophy of Aristotle

Paperback | September 1, 2002

byChristopher Shields

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Aristotle attaches particular significance to the homonymy of many central concepts in philosophy and science: that is, to the diversity of ways of being common to a single general concept. His preoccupation with homonymy influences his approach to almost every subject that he considers, andit clearly structures the philosophical methodology that he employs both when criticizing others and when advancing his own positive theories. Where there is homonymy there is multiplicity: Aristotle aims to find the order within this multiplicity, and believes that doing so is crucial to scientificinquiry and philosophical progress.Christopher Shields investigates and evaluates Aristotle's approach to questions about homonymy, characterizing the metaphysical and semantic commitments necessary to establish the homonymy of a given concept. Then, in a series of case-studies, Shields examines in detail some of Aristotle'sprincipal applications of homonymy--to the body, sameness and oneness, life, goodness, and being. Shields's aim is not only to give a fuller understanding of Aristotle's methodology and to illuminate his specific doctrines in a variety of areas, but to show that this methodology remains fruitfultoday.

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Aristotle attaches particular significance to the homonymy of many central concepts in philosophy and science: that is, to the diversity of ways of being common to a single general concept. His preoccupation with homonymy influences his approach to almost every subject that he considers, andit clearly structures the philosophical metho...

Christopher Shields is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Classics at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:304 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.66 inPublished:September 1, 2002Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199253072

ISBN - 13:9780199253074

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Table of Contents

Part I: Homonymy as Such1. The Varieties of Homonymy2. The Promises and Problems of Homonymy3. Signification4. Core-Dependent HomonymyPart II: Homonymy at Work5. The Body6. Oneness, Sameness, and Referential Opacity7. The Meaning of Life8. Goodness9: Being. Afterword: Homonymy's Promise ReconsideredIndex LocorumGeneral IndexBibliography