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Cooper, J. M. - Aristotle on the Authority of 'Appearances'

Cooper, J. M. - Aristotle on the Authority of 'Appearances'

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03/01/2013

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.
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";.
Reason
and
'Emotion
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OPER
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,
4,2.
I\yotlld
'like
'-tp
thank
Susan
Sa,uv:e<l\Jeyet
for4etaileQ:,an4·helpfu:l~omments".on
"an
early"'"
draft
dfis
~i:s:s:aX",whi;c!nread
ro
the:
,Philo:s,opJty_
IJe,p
artrn:e,rit
of
Co
r:ne,UUniV'e:rsio{.
1.
wauld':
;;dS:f}
liketo-thank
'~heparticipants'pt:
the
Berlin:
cp'nierence·
heldih
honor
,of
Gunthet.',
on
2:5
July:,1
SN~
1:
Jot
dreir,p,a-rieut:e;~
'3JH:le,spet:iatlY-1VIich~reJFre,de,
lo:tvfiis
:a·O:yi~eon
'IT:QW
tQ~~',.!':
reorganize
'~l
ad
otherwise
Improve
my
presentation
,of.'
the
material.
.2.80
,
-
and
theircontemporaries
mQ's1-h,~ve
done
th~
i:~~~
QJ
spirited
;cl;eslres-"a,s':"':
distinct.and
special
lsind.
of
desires,aimed
at
a<ttiye:"qge:oGY
andcompetiti....:'
self-promotion
we
would
not
be
makin..
these
demands
inthefirst
pl··,,:,:'::
Perhaps
then
we
woulelhave
understood
Aristcrle.
in
this'w'ay
from
b~~,gifl[]Jng,,~dt"hblit
h~lvin:go
be',
told
explicitly
at
every
point
about',
special
role
played
tl}7
spiriteddesirein.the
constitution
':0£
moral
virtue,
I'
I
Sl~,LECTE.DFrJRTHER'READINGs',
.,'"'.Q,Z;;rE.ljq~'alw·~ys'known
t:hflt
eyery
human
lifeis
significantly
ttffe.cted
:,:by
the
consequences
,of
,_s,doH
an'q
bad
luck.Things
happen
ttf'qu,e.ritly
to.
':':',..ople
byk
luc:k:~thtngs
out
o,~,he
QrdiI),aty
and
unintended
'by
them
or':','anro,ne,els~e-w,hlch
they
no:neth~le&5wish",a.ndw.ir:b.good
reason,
would
,'orwouldnorhappea,
.or,
which
with
g,0'EXd
:.reason,th,ey
arepleased
or
regret
have>
happened
ro
them.Peopleate
'born
'withspecial
talents
or
disabilities,
,forexample;
tuin)gs
th,eY'
havecared
:a
lot
g
bout
and
worked
,har::d
toachieve.J~:il?
rliropghno'
fault
of
tl1eir.
owri
Dr
-aJryb:o:ay
elsejnnd
'sty
on,
Disputes
.'"arise,hQwey~r,
overwhether
ana,
'if
so,
in,
pre:cj,sely
'whatways,
luck
is
ever
..;.;'t.esp,onsibleforourbeing.morall
y
good.
orbad
persons;
"f.p~~:w'he't~h
r
ill
some
;."-situation
we,door
do
notact'badly,erdo
some-neutral-seermug
thln,g
well
;,t
or
badly;.
{),t
forwhether,
everythingtaken
into
'~cQn.side,tatiorr,_ou:r
lives-are
.""fg9Qd
onesornot.'
'Inher
bOQkThJ;.',Fragility
of
Goodness
M"a,rrha
Nus'sbaurn:.p,res~nts
.a,
view
onthese.matters
which
is
hig11;~Y
;;u:c€uD,.m.oda'ting
to.
the"
tole
:',;whic,h,
l'u~k
canplay:,,.~~pe.ci,ally
inunderminingahuman
lite,
in
knocking
',:','t
·off
.itsmoral
'k,eel.,(Sh:eclaim's"tobe
to{Io,v.;(ng
an
"Aristotelian"
method
,,<,:"
inethical
theory
.indefending-
her
conclusions,
and
she
'cJosely
associates
,:T:;"Aris'totleJ
with
'herown
outlook,'@nheireportanee.of
moralluck,
2.~
be1ieve,
::"'howi~;v'er,.,
th$~.
'Nus:$'b'~urn
:rtlistittsiet$'tRI1.ds~nd
,'s.er..fb:usly'mi$!·eJ2'res¢~nti'Air!:§'~
..::-'futl~'s
-As;t.ila.l,procedU;f-~s
iiimt?raf
Pb:li.
o:S:o'Rfly,
,Fuitherm,ote,,)
when
correctly
understood
Arisrotle's
pW,Q
views,
assign
luckamuchlesssuhstantialpart
:'Ynthe,fabricofawell..
lived.life
than
:s;he
herself.wishesitto
have.
Nussbaum's
.~"-__.-."~'-.~.:~.~,-.'"..'"-...-.~(-~.-:~
'L',~
~(lcCOtlntgiyes
'us
(1:
valuable
Ctpp,o'ctul)ity
to'in1J:?X'OYf,
OQr
understanding
o.f
-Aristotle,i,s
outlookin.ethical
theory
by
comparing.her
Arisrocle
closely
with
the
,.Aristb,tle"who
emerges.fronta.carefulreading
or
hisown:texts....,
"AristQ'tle,
'as
i~;
well
known,
makes
the
appeal
to
.the
beliefsof
"the
many
and.
the
wise,"
'f1;,u:c[
thus
to,
the
ways
things:
"appear,"
fundamental
'as'
the
srartingpeinrfor-and,
in
'$;Q'me
.senseab:as~icqonttol
on,
'phiJQsQP'h'j:~aJ
in
quiry
in
an
y-area.?
In
e_¥p,Jica'ting','
this,
as;p,e¢t.-,o.f'Ari$:toteHall_ph.ilos~oIihi;z;ing,·
r~russb'~un1:·em
:hasi:zes,e.spe,¢ially
the
bel
iefsof"
the
many
"~-o
dinary
unso-
phisticated
people..In
this'connectionsheinterprets
A'ristQtle.
in
terms
,~Cif
HilaryPutnam's.distinction
between
"metaphysical"
.and
"internal"
realism'
and
maintains
thatAristotlewss,
like
Putnam,
.an
"internal
realist"
in
his
metaphysics<and
i~J
his-
p:hilQ'$Q,p~h¥
overall,
AC(::Qtdin:g,
to
:~er.,what
"the
i
$,eethe'
paper.s
'enride'd
"Moral
Lu-d~,~
]j'fBern;~d.,,'WUn,~l)1S
a~'Hi
Thomas
~~'gel.
2.'
Set!
Nussba
U
m,
t
,Iirqgil
ijy".
,pp~
1
e-l~2.:
A~'
See
rhJt,
~se:mlrUllpttpe(
'hy
'G:~.E~t~
}w'eJl,
:"'TiihEfn4i',ta
p:hl1,:i.np'_'~ena,~~:"
.".SeePutnam's
f{eusoH
j,
Truth,
(i,rid
H.isto:r:y..
S~1;rita,s::,Ger-,a,;sifb-~s,.
"The
Structureof
Ai?isto,tle,';s'
Ethica't
'Thecclry:
'15
.itTeleolegi..
or
aVirtue
'Ethics~?'~
Topo!
1'.5
(,1..9,·,9:,6.),:
S9~:8~b,".:_.
Tuozzo,
Tholn'a$M,.
"Conternplacion,
the
Noble,
;and
't'lJe.
Means
'Th~
s.tand~,d'.
MoralVirtuein
,A"ristotle\;
Ethics."
In"A,:ristotl~,·
V"rt:ue,
~·nil
tb:e
}.4~4n;,
eqitqdb#",
~je::har6k,-a,,>sley
'~flg
QtDers,AflIJltOttZ.S·no-.
'4
(l99S).Edmenrom
Academic
Ptin:till.g",::"
andB1f,blis,Uing,
19
~l6..
1:29-$4.
i::'
I
I,
 
I
,
(
_--"---
282,
,
..
I
t
i
rna.
n
yjl
think
is
what
'''we;),
tnihl{
ill
our'~Qrtlj~lary
moments,
and
in
mak.
philosophyb~.h:o.l4~en:
o
these
appearances
Aristotle
is
restrictingit-to
telr-"'.
the
truth
as
it
.is'.~or
:·us'·'~·"':ol.lr!l'
truth,
the-truth
'about
"our"
'w.orld
r
It.::-.,
when
.she
turns
to
his
ethical
theory
thatwe
seemost
,cle·a.tly
the'.'::consequencesof
'this':as's·t.mibltio:n"
and
.I
.turn
S'h'dril
y
to
'those
im.plicatio':'
Bur
·fir·st
've..need
toask
w.h·~th,~t
{
can
be
~'prrecf:
to
interpret
.Ai'isiotle·',.::
<'
any
other
ancient
thinker
in
such
terms=-terms.
that,
onewould
D1;.1l:§.t
X:nv·e
'~:th~Jr
ntellIgibilIty
to·
developments
in
the
laee-twentiet..
I."
p.hj.1o.S'OP:11-Y
oflanguage
that-gaverise
ttl
such
distinctions
among
"realisms.•:,·:
..!}"..
Slogansaside,
it
is
notclear
to
.mewhat
an'
internal
realistis
supp
r.1Seo.'
tcbelieve
that
.other
people
do
''ilot-~
Wh.en
one'
considers
:c~ref9JJy
wn:.'
N
ussbaurns:~.y·snexpounding
Aristptle":~·,
view's);
"it
turns
nutfo:
be'
qui".
·c()tn·piT~~aJed/O~fi.gIl~'e
out.
!Vh·a..t.Ari~ttQ·de
is
supposed..
tQ'
believe
that
:m'a'.''..'
him
ft'"'
internal
realist..~
.She
does
'indeed
speak,
a,pp~lyin.g
Pu"t-nam'~s>·:ternii·:.:.:
nologies,
0f
Ar.istQ.tle··'stuld,ersta-nding
ofthe
truth,.
or
the
necessity,
o.r'..'
'rcaliry
orexistence,
(j:fa;n-yth,lcli1!l·as.jllwaY'K.th·at
of
th.~
truth"
n:e.c·es;~ity,
ea.lityj:.
or
existence'of
it.
4:-relatb{e
to."
our
human
Ianguage,
our~.'
iscourse.'..'_..
t].ll51ight,,·"'·
our
Jt;'c-ClItceptuul
scheme"..nd
"conceptualization..·"'
Sh·e.
,illft~·es·.
\rfstbtle.~hold
that
·oqr
ability
~Q
re;fe.:r
toanythlng
i:s.
rel-ative
to..,_.,.....-
ttijng:~L~'
He.:t·:~4
p
ea1
to-
~t.h:es,~
deasfromcontemporary
philose
phy
1_....._
'-'Jo..~.
is
provcked
by'
what
Aristotle
says
about
the,tcde
f~rphilo.s:op·hy.
plaY'end
by.
ttl
ph
a
i
nomena.sa
leg;o:mell:a_;
t-a
endo,x·a.-thos:e
variouslydescribed....'.:.:::'
_ppin.r.s.
(the-
(~app.e41t~~·ce;s'~.'
th·e
"things
that
axe
said;'the,
"reputable'
Opi~l~',:
.ions")
tor:a;,n)(.dialecti:-c.a)
.inv~e.·stigatian.ito:·
hlcp~,..-iti
some
way
and.
,legree{,::":.'
·-rb·l.Sf·s·ee·~fntther1,eJ9\\r},
,th:e~:re"S\lJts
of
philosophical
inquiry
must
accordingte:.
'h~hl1
beheld
'flp:s,\v:eta
bl
e...
The
burden
of
Nussbaum's
~.d'e·sc~iption,
of
Aristotle.;'
as
an
"internal
realist"
con-sist-s
inher
intctpretation
.of
his
viewson
h-.~.:::
rhese
.dialectiealstarting-pointsought
to.
control
'~lnd
limit-
pl:iilo,s'Q
:'j
rihe-or-y.
HOl~~{eVeF,~.
t::
is
~0:bvi.().u:s~
:>i
'should
b:e,
'l'h,g·t
'ihe~se$~,~tttng~pqints
.a.r:@~.'
··a·.
:'spe:cial
s~et
.bf
·beliefs,:
·exp:res$ed·
{of
cout'$e~,how
.el&f·_
·would
'tJi¢y
be;,,'
~\vithin·
O~llr
·ctHlcePt~al.schern-e·
and
in
Q1)[
la~ng~·ag·e,
0
':wb}ch
Qther
b.eliets:·:·,·
;e'q.lfalb~
e'}fl?re:~'S'e~d
wlr.h1n
Dllr
co~nce'PtlJ:gtl
s,¢h~'ine,
and
~rguably
:equaJJ.y
'wen:"
at
b~tter
Sl~·pPb1;r.(!d
by
it~
migb.t
b'e.
o.<ppesed(.
In
'whate'ver
:sense
Aristet.'~.
ht)ld~
that
p..JlQ:s-ophic:al
co·n:c.JUSiO'flS
must
be'
co·nfined.,
:~lS,
Nilss;baum·
PUts,,:\:.,
it;
\vith'in,'··~rh;e:circ:re·.ofthe,.
·app.earan-ces·"·:6-
t
:e>cir:cde,'£orm:e·d
by
the
oplnJO:if§2:'"'.
~.of~~the~
tfa.nyJ"-this-,!s
plainly"~a
much
na-rr~ower,,'anq
qu.it€'
diJfetertt,
c·e.stti"c1.'·:'
tiO.!l
r:btLIl
d1e~
Pulhatrii:~::n
lde:a
fn;at
anyrtu'th
w...
di~cQ'"er_(
r
think
we
".<:
dis'eo'vet_)
i:s,,<c·0.nditlQ.ne,q
by
anci.,.r~t~Jive
to:
o,u~
:.once:p.tu.aL..sc'heme,s..·Qm.e-rhing,'.'..
dtat
"u)e
ctea
t.e·~.
.and·
,no~t
sCfrpe
a:b3ctlut.e
ttuth,
s-o.metruth
'3
bout
things
as'.'
th:elT
'~Te
~in.
rn:e;flls,elve.s
apaXt
,.£CO-ffi,c_0:nceJP"tua.1iz'a.tiQn."
'The
opinions·:o.f
~th'¢.
111.a,._Qy~~
~.(:.e,'
j
llstQlle
;s-et,:of
.qp.ini,ons..,xpre.s:se:d'Ln.
Out
co;u'c;epts.,.·jaird
th:e,te
,ar
lots.
of('Jthe-r~},
conflicting
'cHl'es
s.imilarly
se-
exp·te·sse:d..'
,
,
.
'
,:··:-To··see
this,
~ensid,l?rP:ai~m,enid.~:s_"nd
Plato,
the-
predecessorscf
At.lst~)th~·
"".a
Nussbaump~rin~ipally
"h.nold's
'out
f~.:u:.astigation
be'~,aa.is,~
hey
fail
to.
"co&_'
Aris.totle~s
strictures
and
do
not-confine
themselves-in
their
the·oiiling.
;".thin
the,
circl~
.0.£
the
appearances,"
SU·pp:05.e
we'
attempttoapproach..'~philosophies
with
the
'apparatus
;10
hand
of'conceprual.schernes,
condi-
,,.,..,......ft1r
reference,andso
'{ott-h..'
and
the
contrastbetween.metaphy.~ii~.:al
internalrealism..·The.n
.it
seemsto
me
there
is
iu.s·t·.~.~
much
·.gfou~n:d
·for-
~'"
'c••'"~
.......Lc'·~···
ibing
the.s.ce"o:p'p,o,u,cnts
oJAristotle's
as
intemal
realists,
in.
Putnam's
c.,"..,.....•..,...
asthere
is
lor'
8;0
dese..
ihingA.rlsh,tle.,
h.imsf)lf.~AJte.r
all,
Rar.roe.qid.c.s"
':.''''.'dess-(.frg~,
B7
11K).
famously
ins-isted
that,.o·ne
judge
heraccount
of
thee,
,'.the
objective
truth,
.a
truth
that
flies'
inthe
face.of
Otdlila.ry~a·s:s.u~p,-
arts
a
bout
t€aUty~byreason
or
'thought
(Jtrg.o,s~l;.'.
she'.
contrasted.
this
with
)J;:;;~~.'.'_':
un
think
i..
gacceptance
9
f
conventienalbeliefs,Likewise,
.Platd"~
Socrares,
:.'.in.
herfootsteps,
"s.tre.rru:9;t.lS1y
tna.;intained.rn
the:'
Re:p~b..ft.-c(SQ'8t{-,
9~blthat
the,
(Q
o-j
ectively
existingl
ultimate
princip
le
'DI
-th:i:pgs"-.
rIte
<Cioo::d~
-,_........If,
w.as-imm:ecfiately
an,d,.:e,qnaHX
responsibie
both
~or·th..e
"b"eing:
artdtroth.
everythingelse
,rnf!re'
is
.and
)£'o'r
its
being
'known
by~
us.
~hu.~,
rrurh
~Itcl
lity>:c1S
understood
byP.at"h~H:~nt4e:s
and
Platowere
(aattnttatic.aUy_,
by
their
.!I"·C
r
natures]thtlro,u_g:hly"rel~tive
to"
ourthought
arrd
to
our
~{ap:atity
for
owledge;andParmenidesand
Platocould.claim.to
be
fol,lo:wi,ng.
p.tihc.ip:l~~:
..."be.deed·
inour".,;o.ceprualscheme"ininsisting
on
ih,e
a
utho:rity
ef
.:.'.ught.asa
basis
for
determining
'what
reality
is:lik.e~ye;n.
though
t~.e-
,:::::::t:ealit-yJ~
hey
we'rearguing.
.for
was.sornething
ve~ry?,
very-unlike.
what
ordi..
'."~'ry
cnnventinnal.opinions
assumeis
reality..Parmenides
and
Plato,jusr
as
i"..
3:'S;
A.ti:s:~o~le,
develop
r:h..
eir
t1hUQSQP-hit~l
views
by
'~a.pp·ealing
t~
c)-~'i:.
:.thoughtsand
theirconsequencesa-s
conditinned
by
'·O:U,f;·
eonceptualscheme.
.WhenParmenidescallsbeingOne,..
he-
claims
to.mean
whatwe'
:~Jlmean
by
.'::~one';",and
~the-arg-umentshe
give,s
to
esta;bJis'h
this
thesis
st~a>rtfr:.om
id~ea,-s',,';'e:
thinks
'tt.lu.st
dema·nd..
~a.cceptan.ce
by
us,·
.with.
.our
w'ays
.of
thirtl<in'g."
·,our-
.'._coo'c¢·pts"
:.a.n.d.
s:<)
totth'~~
tl'~
'si"mihtr
ly
fot.
Plato
·an·d_
tn.
e:
GOb.tl~
-',.,Wl1e~re
.Atlstat_l:e
.d;iffers
Jffpm
·th·ese
:l?tede~ces.so~:$
i~
6v'(!r.
the
·'q4es.:tiu.I1:
..··.wh¢;th~r
bi;e
b·eli~fs,
t.ha."t
el"_di'P:ary
.p~~QPJe
hold
~,bo'lit
wliatr-~.afi-tyis
:a·C'·~·all~y
.e.are
tr:ue~,
()r'
n:0t~,
and
wheth~~r
tk~fact:
rha_~t
Q.rd.
nary
pe,pple
.h;old
·thes.~
,,';"~~beliefs
is
a·n
y.
r.ea:S0.n,
forlhh:ikin.g·
thereis
any-
truth
in
the·m..
Aris;tQtieres,peets
·~:'·:~:·ih:e:5re·b.e
iefs.and
inSists
tha.
t.
_P,ihil:os'(d"p..bica
I
theory.
m.ust
u.l
timatel,yo:e
answ'er~
:::!a·ble·
to
them
(~fl
sO'rue
way
or
dth~e.r)~
:P.at·rnen.fde.s.
anti"
Plato
d,c)'
t1tlt<~
,/AH
.p,arties
to
this,
di.s:pule
,sh:at.e
3{cOIi1hiitni:e~nt
to·
out·
";tonce'ptu~1
,sch~¢,m'e?~hd
:':."it.s.ca:p.aci'ty-
to
lead
US;
t_o
the
·tru'~h_;
wh·~t
hey'
disJ1g
ree
abo,Qt
is·
hpw·
~o
:;....eigh;.
arg:u.~
for
and
·against,.,
,a.·nd
u.ltim.a:t:~l_y
'de,cide
b,e~ee:n.,
dJ£f~'ring,
.b:elie.f:s
~·:a.l~
ofw:hich
·are:e·xpre·ssed'·within
'it:,.
·and·catn
pla~usibir
beclaime.d"
to,
·b:e
:.~.::;·s;up.p.()tten
by
it.
-So'
it
m·ust'be'
a,
mistake
to
'try
t<fi
pr.o-m'\lte
.Aristotle's,
cal:~se
:-'~a.nd·
to'
deni.·grate;
,his
tn.o.ttEr
:tationalis:t
pred.ece:ssots,by
·tatring..he
latter
~rt'h
.;.the-.
'btll$h'
oi"
··(~s.;qpp(J"s.~,ny)
no:tis:.~,nSi"d:aJ
rrfetaphy_siC'al
fe·alis,m
~nd
·de:cking:.·Ar:isto·tle
out
in
thelurid
but.
·c·o:tnfor.til)g
c.Qlor.s:
of
(sup'pbs,edly)
,~(e.nsib.le·
:,~..l,fi
te;.tna,J_,
t'e:aljs:m'~
Thi~s,
cQ'nt;e:mp;oraty
ciisti~nctiS)'n
is
com]?
letely
itr:e.lev~,nt
t.o.:
t
;:
j,
,
!
I
.
,
•~:0-
j"
,
='""
,
,
._
,
I
!
i
!.
,.
,

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