From Aristotle’s oppositions to Aristotelian oppositions

In Valery V. Petroff (ed.), The Legacies of Aristotle as Constitutive Element of European Rationality: Proceedings of the Moscow International Conference on Aristotle. Moscou, Russie: (2017)
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Aristotle’s philosophy is considered with respect to one central concept of his philosophy, viz. opposition. Far from being a mere side-effect of syllogistic, it is argued in the present paper that opposition helps to articulate ontology and logic through an account of what can be or cannot be in a systematic and structural way. The paper is divided into three main parts. In Section I, the notion of Being is scrutinized through Aristotle’s theory of categories. In Section II, the notion of Non-Being is connected to Aristotle’s theory of oppositions. In Section III, the notion of essence is revisited in order to bring about a holist theory of meaning by individuating through opposite properties. In conclusion, the legacy of Aristotle is depicted as balanced between a powerful reflection around Being and a restrictive ontology of substance.
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