Demonstration and Scientific Knowledge in William of Ockham

Demonstration and Scientific Knowledge in William of Ockham 516 Book Reviews / Early Science and Medicine 13 (2008) 509-530 John Lee Longeway, Demonstration and Scientific Knowledge in William of Ockham. A Translation of Summa Logicae III-II: De Syllogismo Demonstrativo , and Selections from the Prologue to the Ordinatio, (Notre Dame, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, 2007), pp. xx+432, $58.00 (cloth), ISBN 0 268 03378 1. Most historians of philosophy, just like most contemporary philosophers, have taken little interest in Aristotle’s theory of demonstration, basis for what he considered the highest and most secure form of knowledge. Instead, all the fuss over Aristotle’s logic has centered on his theory of meaning, his understanding of the proposition, his syl- logistic and his consideration of logical fallacies. It is a shame that this is so, for despite the fact that in modern times we have lost confidence in our ability to deduce neces- sary truths about the natural world—or almost any other subject—examining Aris- totle’s claims about demonstration provides the opportunity to learn a great deal. For one thing, dealing with the formal epistemic problems Aristotle faces forces us to reex- amine with peculiar urgency just what it is we think it means to say we know some- http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Early Science and Medicine Brill

Demonstration and Scientific Knowledge in William of Ockham

Early Science and Medicine, Volume 13 (5): 516 – Jan 1, 2008

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 2008 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1383-7427
eISSN
1573-3823
D.O.I.
10.1163/157338208X345795
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

516 Book Reviews / Early Science and Medicine 13 (2008) 509-530 John Lee Longeway, Demonstration and Scientific Knowledge in William of Ockham. A Translation of Summa Logicae III-II: De Syllogismo Demonstrativo , and Selections from the Prologue to the Ordinatio, (Notre Dame, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, 2007), pp. xx+432, $58.00 (cloth), ISBN 0 268 03378 1. Most historians of philosophy, just like most contemporary philosophers, have taken little interest in Aristotle’s theory of demonstration, basis for what he considered the highest and most secure form of knowledge. Instead, all the fuss over Aristotle’s logic has centered on his theory of meaning, his understanding of the proposition, his syl- logistic and his consideration of logical fallacies. It is a shame that this is so, for despite the fact that in modern times we have lost confidence in our ability to deduce neces- sary truths about the natural world—or almost any other subject—examining Aris- totle’s claims about demonstration provides the opportunity to learn a great deal. For one thing, dealing with the formal epistemic problems Aristotle faces forces us to reex- amine with peculiar urgency just what it is we think it means to say we know some-

Journal

Early Science and MedicineBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2008

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