Sabtu, 23 April 2011

Zeno of Eleac. 490–430 Bce

According to Plato (Parmenides (127A–C), Zeno was born around 490 BCE. He was a citizen of Elea, a Greek city in southern Italy with which Parmenides was also associated. Little is known about his life. The setting of Plato's Parmenides is a visit Zeno and Parmenides made to Athens in Socrates' youth (around 450 BCE), but since the conversation in that dialogue between Parmenides and Socrates certainly did not take place, there is no strong reason to believe that the visit did either. According to tradition, Zeno died heroically defying a tyrant in Elea. Philosophically he was a follower of Parmenides, whose doctrines he defended by arguing against opposing views; hence Aristotle called him the father of dialectic. Although Zeno wrote a book containing forty arguments against plurality. very little of his writing remains; approximately twenty lines of quotations, supplemented by relatively scanty testimonia. We have information about a dozen of his arguments. Under these circumstances, Zeno's immense influence on the history of philosophy is all the more remarkable.
Plato, our earliest witness, depicts Zeno as defending Parmenides' views against people who ridiculed Parmenides on the grounds that his views have absurd consequences. Zeno paid them back in their own coin, pursuing implications of the opposing views, which he showed have consequences even more absurd than those the opponents claimed to follow for Parmenides (Parmenides

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Sabtu, 23 April 2011

Zeno of Eleac. 490–430 Bce

According to Plato (Parmenides (127A–C), Zeno was born around 490 BCE. He was a citizen of Elea, a Greek city in southern Italy with which Parmenides was also associated. Little is known about his life. The setting of Plato's Parmenides is a visit Zeno and Parmenides made to Athens in Socrates' youth (around 450 BCE), but since the conversation in that dialogue between Parmenides and Socrates certainly did not take place, there is no strong reason to believe that the visit did either. According to tradition, Zeno died heroically defying a tyrant in Elea. Philosophically he was a follower of Parmenides, whose doctrines he defended by arguing against opposing views; hence Aristotle called him the father of dialectic. Although Zeno wrote a book containing forty arguments against plurality. very little of his writing remains; approximately twenty lines of quotations, supplemented by relatively scanty testimonia. We have information about a dozen of his arguments. Under these circumstances, Zeno's immense influence on the history of philosophy is all the more remarkable.
Plato, our earliest witness, depicts Zeno as defending Parmenides' views against people who ridiculed Parmenides on the grounds that his views have absurd consequences. Zeno paid them back in their own coin, pursuing implications of the opposing views, which he showed have consequences even more absurd than those the opponents claimed to follow for Parmenides (Parmenides

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