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Edited by Simon J.G. Burton, Joshua Hollmann and Eric M. Parker

Nicholas of Cusa and Early Modern Reform sheds new light on Cusanus’ relationship to early modernity by focusing on the reform of church, the reform of theology, the reform of perspective, and the reform of method – which together aim to encompass the breadth and depth of Cusanus’ own reform initiatives. In particular, in examining the way in which he served as inspiration for a wide and diverse array of reform-minded philosophers, ecclesiastics, theologians, and lay scholars in the midst of their struggle for the renewal and restoration of the individual, society, and the world, our volume combines a focus on Cusanus as a paradigmatic thinker with a study of his concrete influence on early modern thought. This volume is aimed at scholars working in the field of late medieval and early modern philosophy, theology, and history of science.
As the first Anglophone volume to explore the early modern reception of Nicholas of Cusa, this work will provide an important complement to a growing number of companions focusing on his life and thought.

Classical Rhetoric in the Middle Ages

The Medieval Rhetors and Their Art 400–1300, with Manuscript Survey to 1500 CE

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John O. Ward

Classical Rhetoric in the Middle Ages: The Medieval Rhetors and Their Art 400-1300, with manuscript survey to 1500 CE is a completely updated version of John Ward’s much-used doctoral thesis of 1972, and is the definitive treatment of this fundamental aspect of medieval and rhetorical culture. It is commonly believed that medieval writers were interested only in Christian truth, not in Graeco-Roman methods of ‘persuasion’ to whatever viewpoint the speaker / writer wanted. Dr Ward, however, investigates the content of well over one thousand medieval manuscripts and shows that medieval writers were fully conscious of and much dependent upon Graeco-Roman rhetorical methods of persuasion. The volume then demonstrates why and to what purpose this use of classical rhetoric took place.

Nicholas of Cusa and Times of Transition

Essays in Honor of Gerald Christianson

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Edited by Thomas M. Izbicki, Jason Aleksander and Donald Duclow

Nicholas of Cusa (1401-1464) was active during the Renaissance, developing adventurous ideas even while serving as a churchman. The religious issues with which he engaged – spiritual, apocalyptic and institutional – were to play out in the Reformation. These essays reflect the interests of Cusanus but also those of Gerald Christianson, who has studied church history, the Renaissance and the Reformation. The book places Nicholas into his times but also looks at his later reception. The first part addresses institutional issues, including Schism, conciliarism, indulgences and the possibility of dialogue with Muslims. The second treats theological and philosophical themes, including nominalism, time, faith, religious metaphor, and prediction of the end times.

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Damaris Wilmers

In Beyond Schools: Muḥammad b. Ibrāhīm al-Wazīrʼs (d. 840/1436) Epistemology of Ambiguity, Damaris Wilmers provides the first extensive analysis of Ibn al-Wazīrʼs thought and its role in the “Sunnisation of the Zaydiyya”, emphasizing its significance for conflicts between schools of thought and law beyond the Yemeni context. Contrasting Ibn al-Wazīrʼs works with those of his Zaydi contemporary Aḥmad b. Yaḥyā b. al-Murtaḍā, Damaris Wilmers offers a study of a number of heretofore unedited texts from 9th/15th century Yemen when Zaydi identity was challenged by an increasing theological and legal diversity. She shows how Ibn al-Wazīr, who has been classed with different schools, actually de-emphasized school affiliation and developed an integrative approach based on a unique theory of knowledge.

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Fedor Benevich

In Essentialität und Notwendigkeit: Avicenna und die Aristotelische Tradition stellt Fedor Benevich einen Kerngedanken der Metaphysik und der Epistemologie Avicennas (gest. 1037) vor: seine Theorie der Essenz und der wissenschaftlichen Bestimmung essentieller und notwendiger Attribute. Die Studie untersucht zentrale Begriffe der avicennischen Philosophie wie Essentialität, Notwendigkeit, Universalität, Unmittelbarkeit, Primärheit und Spezifizität. Zudem wird erstmals dargelegt, wie Avicenna seine Position in Bezug auf diese Thematik im Laufe seiner Karriere entwickelte und so seinen revolutionären “konzeptionellen Essentialismus” ausarbeitete. Es wird weiterhin gezeigt, dass Avicennas Position der aristotelischen Tradition zu Teilen folgt, von dieser jedoch am zentralen Stellen abweicht, insbesondere dort, wo sich Avicenna kritisch mit den Interpretationen der „Bagdader Peripatetiker“ auseinandersetzte.

In Essentialität und Notwendigkeit: Avicenna und die Aristotelische Tradition Fedor Benevich presents the key doctrine of Avicenna’s (d. 1037) metaphysics and epistemology: his theory of essence and the scientific determination of essential and necessary attributes. The book studies central notions of Avicenna’s philosophy such as essentiality, necessity, universality, immediacy, primacy, and specificity. It also provides an unprecedented account of how Avicenna’s views on these issues changed throughout his career, in arguing for his revolutionary “conceptual essentialism”. Avicenna’s position partially follows the Aristotelian tradition yet also departs from it, especially when Avicenna argues against the Baghdad Peripatetic School.

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Edited by Roberto Hofmeister Pich and Andreas Speer

This volume collects essays which are thematically connected through the work of Kent Emery Jr., to whom the volume is dedicated. A main focus lies on the attempts to bridge the gap between mysticism and a systematic approach to medieval philosophical thought. The essays address a wide range of topics concerning (a) the nature of the human soul (in philosophical and theological discourse); (b) medieval theories of cognition (natural and supernatural), self-knowledge and knowledge of God; (c) the human soul’s contemplation of, and union with, God; (d) the tradition of “the modes of theology” in the Middle Ages; (e) the relation between philosophy and theology. Various articles are dedicated to major figures of the 13th and 14th century philosophy, others display new material based on critical editions. Contributors are Jan A. Aertsen, Stephen Brown, Bernardo Carlos Bazán, William J. Courtenay, Alfredo Santiago Culleton, Silvia Donati, Bernd Goehring, Guy Guldentops, Daniel Hobbins, Roberto Hofmeister Pich, Georgi Kapriev, Steven P. Marrone, Stephen M. Metzger, Timothy B. Noone, Mikolaj Olszewski, Alessandro Palazzo, Garrett R. Smith, Andreas Speer, Carlos Steel, Loris Sturlese, Chris Schabel, Christian Trottmann, and Gordon A. Wilson.

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Edited by Frédérique Woerther

The present volume brings together thirteen articles as so many chapters of a book, devoted to the history, methods, and practices of the commentaries that have been written on Aristotle’s Rhetoric. Examining both the linguistic and factual background, these contributions attempt to insert each of the commentaries into its particular historical, political, social, philosophical, and pedagogical context.
The historical periods and geographical areas that arise – from Greco-Roman antiquity to Heidegger’s philosophy, from the Syriac and Arabic traditions to the Western world – make it possible, in sum, not only to indicate how the Rhetoric has been read and interpreted, but also to offer general perspectives on the practice of explicating ancient texts.

Le présent volume rassemble treize articles envisagés comme autant de chapitres d’un livre et dédiés à l’histoire, à la méthode et à la pratique des commentaires à la Rhétorique d’Aristote. Mêlant l’approche matérielle et linguistique, ces contributions se proposent de réinscrire chacun des commentaires dans son contexte historique, politique, social, culturel, philosophique, et pédagogique particulier.
Les périodes et les aires géographiques considérées ici—de l’Antiquité gréco-romaine jusqu’à la philosophie de Heidegger, des traditions syriaque et arabe au monde occidental—permettent, in fine, non seulement de suggérer des pistes de lecture pour la Rhétorique et l’histoire des interprétations de la Rhétorique, mais aussi de dessiner des perspectives plus générales sur la pratique du commentaire.

Rethinking Anselm's Arguments

A Vindication of his Proof of the Existence of God

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Richard Campbell

This book re-examines Anselm’s famous arguments for the existence of God in his Proslogion, and in his Reply. It demonstrates how he validly deduces from plausible premises that God so truly exists that He could not be thought not to exist. Most commentators, ancient and modern, wrongly located his argument in a passage which is not about God at all. It becomes evident that, consequently, much contemporary criticism is based on misreading and misunderstanding his text. It reconstructs his reasoning through three distinct but logically connected stages. It shows that, even if Anselm’s crucial premises are sceptically interpreted, his conclusions still follow. Properly understood, this argument is not vulnerable to the standard criticisms, including Gaunilo’s ‘Lost island’ counter-example.

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Roberto Pinzani

The problem of universals is one of the main philosophical issues. In this book the author reconstructs the history of the problem considering a selection of medieval representative texts and authors. The source of medieval and postmedieval debate is identified in the Socratic-Platonic survey on the definition of concepts. In the Categories, Aristotle discusses important topics concerning the relations that exist between logical terms. In particular he establishes a kind of predication principle: categorial terms have a certain predication relation if (and only if) some facts expressed by ordinary sentences hold. The Categories also because of their particular disciplinary status, halfway between logic and metaphysics, leave a number of questions open. Among these questions, a particularly intriguing one is Porphyry’s riddle: are there genera and species? And, if there are such things, what are they like?

Sprachphilosophie in der islamischen Rechtstheorie

Zur avicennischen Klassifikation der Bezeichnung bei Faḫr ad-dīn ar-Rāzī (gest. 1210)

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Nora Kalbarczyk

In Sprachphilosophie in der islamischen Rechtstheorie untersucht Nora Kalbarczyk das bedeutende rechtstheoretische Werk al-Maḥṣūl fī ʿilm uṣūl al-fiqh von Faḫr ad-dīn ar-Rāzī (gest. 1210). Anhand einer detaillierten Analyse der sprachtheoretischen Abhandlung dieses Werks beleuchtet sie den Einfluss der philosophischen Tradition auf die islamische Rechtstheorie ( uṣūl al-fiqh) in der sogenannten post-avicennischen Ära (11.-14 Jh.). Im Zentrum steht dabei eine Klassifikation der Bezeichnung ( dalāla), die sich auf Ibn Sīnā (lat. Avicenna, gest. 1037) zurückführen lässt: Ein Wort kann eine Bedeutung auf dem Wege der Kongruenz ( muṭābaqa), der Inklusion ( taḍammun) oder der Implikation ( iltizām) bezeichnen. Die Autorin zeigt auf, wie Faḫr ad-dīn ar-Rāzī auf der Grundlage der avicennischen Bezeichnungstheorie ein hermeneutisches Instrumentarium entwickelt, das nicht nur für die arabische Philosophie selbst relevant ist, sondern auch für verschiedene Fragestellungen der islamischen Rechtstheorie fruchtbar gemacht wird.

In Sprachphilosophie in der islamischen Rechtstheorie Nora Kalbarczyk examines the influential jurisprudential work al-Maḥṣūl fī ʿilm uṣūl al-fiqh (d. 1210). By means of a detailed analysis of the linguistic treatise of this work she highlights the impact of the philosophical tradition on Islamic legal theory (uṣūl al-fiqh) in the so-called post-Avicennian era (11th-14th c.). Her main focus lies on a classification of signification ( dalāla) that can be traced back to Ibn Sīnā (lat. Avicenna, d. 1037): a word may signify a meaning by way of congruence ( muṭābaqa), containment ( taḍammun) or implication ( iltizām). The author shows how Faḫr ad-dīn ar-Rāzī develops – on the basis of the Avicennian theory of signification – a hermeneutic toolbox which is not only relevant in the context of Arabic philosophy but also useful for different questions of Islamic legal theory.