By Jonathan Barnes

ISBN-10: 0192854089

ISBN-13: 9780192854087

The impression of Aristotle, the prince of philosophers, at the highbrow historical past of the West is moment to none. during this publication, Jonathan Barnes examines Aristotle's medical researches, his discoveries in good judgment and his metaphysical theories, his paintings in psychology and in ethics and politics, and his rules approximately artwork and poetry, putting his teachings of their ancient context.

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Additional info for Aristotle: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

Example text

To be sure, the ideological motivation of Marx’s adversaries needs no further explanation beyond the self-evident hostility of its negative posture. The position of “vulgar-Marxism,” however, is much more complicated than that. For the views of its representatives range from the fatalistic determinism of the Second International to the subjective voluntarism of Stalin and his followers, and well beyond; all the way down to the paradoxical voluntarism of “structuralist Marxism,” which manages to combine a mechanical conception of determination and “homology” with a complete depreciation of the subject of socio-historical action.

As already mentioned, philosophy, according to Marx, had to play a vital role in the process of self-emancipation. However, in order to be able to do so, first it had to emancipate itself from the tyranny of its own mystifications and preconceptions, grounding itself at every level—from the most immediate and particular propositions to the most abstract categories and generalizations—in the real historical dynamics of social being. The materialist conception of history was meant to provide precisely such grounding.

And this is only the outer perimeter of the web of tautologies from which the Popperian “refutation” is constructed. The next circle is spun by definitionally—and, of course, arbitrarily—separating the production of knowledge from the social and historical conditions of its production, so as to be able to oppose this artificially disembodied knowledge to social/historical developments and determinations. To be sure, this kind of disembodied knowledge is immune to social influences and to the possibility of prediction.

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Aristotle: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Jonathan Barnes

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