Explain why scientific accounts of the time were different than they are now (starts on p. 32).

Western Philosophy no outside resources!!!!



Discussion 1


Readings: Cornford Chapter 2





1.       Explain why scientific accounts of the time were different than they are now (starts on p. 32). What form did scientific accounts of the time tend to take and why was Socrates unhappy with Anaxagoras’ account?


2.       Sophists were a big deal during Socrates’ time (and not in a good way). Socrates was actually accused of being a Sophist at one point in the Apologia. Who were the sophists? (p. 38) How did Socrates feel about them and why was he accused of being one?


Discussion 2


1.       Who are the lovers of knowledge and what knowledge do they possess? How does this, for Plato through the mouthpiece of Socrates, equate to knowledge? (starts on p. 14 as well and the differences between the two is re-emphasized on p. 18)





2.       Building on question 5, according to Plato through Socrates, are the things we perceive (i.e. the things we see, touch, taste and feel) real? Do they represent forms or images?


Discussion 3




1.       On page 20 in “Demonstrative Knowledge and its Starting-points: Aristotle, Posterior Analytics,” Aristotle describes how we come to remember things through sense perception. What is sense perception and what is its role in memory, according to Aristotle?


2.       The “Categories” is the reason why Aristotle is considered the father of biology, which was another of his big contributions. How does Aristotle define substance in terms of his divisions of living things?


Discussion 4


1.       The dream argument is one of Descartesmost famous positions in his Meditations. Explain the dream argument in detail. What does his argument call into question and why? (starts on p. 23)


2.       What is Descartessolution to his own doubts? (starts on p. 24 and ends on p. 25). Explain his solution. Based on this solution and our considerations regarding Plato as a rationalist and Aristotle as an empiricist, would you say Descartes is an empiricist or a rationalist?




Discussion 5


1.       Do we have any justification for believing the future will be like the past (this isnt an opinion, but more about following what Hume is describing in the first passage here)?





2.       What are the necessary connections Hume is referring to on page 439? Are we justified, according to his account, in believing in necessary connections (i.e. is there anything, really, such as a causal connection or is it more our tendency to assume)?




Discussion 6


1.       On page 50, Moore lists a number of “truisms.” Identify a few of these truisms and how he claims to know them.


2.       On page 54, Moore writes, if “they are features of the ‘common sense view of the worldit follows they are true. What is this view of common sense and why is Moore specifically proposing this take on common sense (i.e. what is his piece railing against or disputing or why does he believe a common sense approach need be taken)?

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