Third Course - FALL 2007
Basic Principles in Natural Philosophy and Logic
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm, at the Family Research Council Building, 801 G Street, NW, Washington, D.C.
as classicly understood has a clear pedagogical order. The
study of more advanced areas, like metaphysics and ethics,
needs to be preceded by a grounding in preliminary concepts
and principles, both concerning reasoning in general (logic)
and the character of the physical world (natural philosophy
or "physics"). This course will give an overview of the Aristotelian
conception of logic, emphasizing not just the formation and
evaluation of argument, but general questions of human thought
and speech (questions today often thought of as more matters
of epistemology, philosophy of science, and philosophy of
language, rather than logic). It will also review the central
principles of Aristotelian natural philosophy, especially
the doctrine of the four causes, and will consider also the
Aristotelian treatment of "the soul"-the nature and powers
of the living creature, especially the human being-as a special
case of applied natural philosophy.
19/9: The structure of logic (three parts, its relation to
the rest of philosophy).
pm - 9:00 pm, at the Family Research Council Building,
801 G Street,
NW, Washington, D.C.
background reading is required for the first class, but students
who wish to may turn to Ralph McInerny's discussion of Aristotle's
logic in A History of Western Philosophy (section C of Chapter
3, available here http://www2.nd.edu/Departments/Maritain/etext/hwp110a.htm.
9/26: On the Categories - substance, accident, "the problem
10/10: Scientific and Dialectical Reasoning (Posterior Analytics,
10/24: Physics - motion, the four causes.
11/7: Physics - the four causes (cont.), the first cause.
11/28: On the soul - its definition.
12/5: On the soul - its powers.