By C. W. A. Whitaker
De Interpretatione is between Aristotle's so much influential and commonly learn writings; C. W. A. Whitaker provides the 1st systematic examine of this paintings, and provides a thorough new view of its goals, its constitution, and its position in Arisotle's method. He exhibits that De Interpretatione isn't really a disjointed essay on ailing- hooked up matters, as often suggestion, yet a hugely prepared and systematic treatise on common sense, argument, and dialectic.
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Extra info for Aristotle's De Interpretatione: Contradiction and Dialectic
Chapter i: Significant Utterances 23 whose meaning is assigned by rational beings, they will be tokens both for the thoughts of those rational beings and for the things of which their thoughts are likenesses. So, just as words are both of thoughts and of things, so they may be said to be tokens for both. We should now turn to consider in more detail what Aristotle means by saying that words are signs. A sign is defined in the Prior Analytics as something from which the existence of something else may be inferred: if there is a sign, then there is some object of which it is a sign (APr.
Studi c testf, 5 and. 8 (Florence, 1988), I 126-32 and IL 47-9. 22 Aristotle's De Interpretatione on philosophical grounds, I have argued that Kretzmann's interpretation involves a confusion over Aristotle's views on nature and convention, and that BeJardi neglects the importance of the relation between words and things. We are left agreeing with Ammonius, then, that Aristotle means to say that spoken words are primarily signs of thoughts, and secondarily signs of things. Our understanding of these lines cannot consist merely in a choice between the three interpretations of Ammonius, Kretemann, and Belardi, however.
Spoken utterances only have any meaning by convention, and not by nature, even though they are expressed by means of the voice, which it is part of human nature to be able to produce. We are told that words are not words by nature (16*27), and are not tools (17*1). They are, instead, conventional tokens, Aristotle certainly does not argue that they are both natural and conventional. 17 Here he makes the point clearly that the semantic function of a spoken sound depends on. its adoption as a token, and not on its being spoken.
Aristotle's De Interpretatione: Contradiction and Dialectic by C. W. A. Whitaker