Chapter

The Arguments from the Sciences: Forms and Knowledge

Gail Fine

in On Ideas

Published in print August 1995 | ISBN: 9780198235491
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597398 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198235496.003.0005
The Arguments from the Sciences: Forms and Knowledge

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Fine begins the examination of the Peri Idēon's arguments for the existence of forms. The first argument, the Arguments from the Sciences, is a group of three arguments, according to which the existence of the Sciences, or the branches of knowledge, requires the existence of forms. The Arguments from the Sciences are the only arguments that try to establish forms on the basis of an appeal to considerations about knowledge. On Fine's interpretation, the central thread of these arguments is that, since the nature of F‐ness cannot be explained with reference to particular Fs, hence there must be forms as the basic objects of knowledge. The arguments are valid, insofar as they establish that there must be non‐sensible universals; but Aristotle objects that they are invalid as arguments for the existence of forms—the universals they establish are not necessarily separate, perfect paradigms.

Keywords: Arguments from the Sciences; knowledge; non‐sensible universals; perfect paradigms; separate

Chapter.  7082 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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