This article considers how visionary art expresses itself within paintings and pictorial configurations by using Neumann’s work to expand on Jung’s notion of the ‘visionary mode of creativity.’ The first part is a comparative study of Neumann’s ‘four stages of psychological development’ discussed in ‘The Origins and History of Consciousness’ (1949) and his ‘four stages of art in relation to its epoch’ discussed in his essay ‘Art and Time’ (1959). This comparison aims to establish a selection of categories that considers the role of art on the micro-level (the individual) and the macro-level (society). Additionally, it is suggested that these four categories offer an interesting framework for identifying and understanding visionary artworks. Subsequently, the second part uses Neumann’s framework to examine a selection of paintings from ‘Liber Novus’ (2009).
In the Siris, Berkeley provides a faithful and documented interpretation of the Platonic doctrine of ideas. Through sound philological and philosophical remarks, he particularly deals with the Theaetetus, on the one hand, by analyzing the koina-theory, on the other hand, by refuting the absolute relativism deriving from the homo mensura-theory. More in particular, reading the Theaetetus in connection to the Timaeus, he finds in Plato a support for his own theory of the unreality of sensible things. However, Berkeley keeps clearly in mind the difference between the ontological character of Platonic ideas from his own concept of ideas, and this makes him an attentive reader of ancient philosophical texts.
Plato’s Theaetetus and Aristotle’s Posterior Analytics are the two greatest works that antiquity has handed down to us concerning the problem of knowledge and of scientific knowledge in particular. The two works probably date to much the same period. In the first part of this essay I examine a chapter of the Posterior Analytics (I 33) in which Aristotle establishes a clear difference between epistēmē and doxa, and between their respective objects, implicitly rejecting the third definition of epistēmē that we find in the Theaetetus, according to which epistēmē is a kind of doxa. For Aristotle, instead, epistēmē and doxa are two species of the genus hypolēpsis, where “hypolēpsis” is a new technical term introduced by Aristotle to designate simply holding something to be true and can be translated with “belief”, while doxa is a mere opinion, that is, believing something to be true without knowing it. In this way it is clear that, for Aristotle, knowledge cannot be an opinion. In the second part, I examine the Aristotelian definitions of knowing in the Posterior Analytics (I 2) and in the Physics (I 1), noting that they are in fact circular. My conclusion is quite skeptical: Aristotle is simply telling us that scientific knowledge, whatever it might be, is knowledge of causes, and this is something that he takes over already starting with Plato’s Gorgias and Meno. But, at the end of the day, we do not have an explicit, non-circular, definition of epistēmē neither in Plato nor in Aristotle.
The platonic prescription of escape from the world as ὁμοίωσις θεῷ that we read in Tht. 176a5–b2 but present also in many other dialogues – an issue that received great attention by the scholars in the last twenty years – has been identified by the Medioplatonic philosophers with the telos of human life and therefore with happiness. With these connotations it becomes an issue debated by Neoplatonic philosophers from Plotinus to the epigones of the Alexandrian school. The problems these philosophers propose to clarify are many: to what God Plato prescribes to assimilate; if the escape prescribed by Plato implies a total leaving from political activity; in what measure the man can assimilate himself to God; if god assimilates himself to man since man assimilates himself to god; what Plato intends when he speaks of justice, piety and intelligence and what relation these virtues have to each other. With Philoponus, as with Philon, the issue of ὁμοίωσις θεῷ ends by crossing the boundaries of Platonic ethics and metaphysics and thus becomes destined to permeate Christian reflection in the centuries of Byzantium. In this paper, after presenting the issue of ὁμοίωσις θεῷ in his general lines and anteceding Late Neoplatonism, I try to analyze the problems and the solutions offered by late Neoplatonic philosophers in their interpretation of Theat. 176a5–b2.
In this paper I attempt to defend the view that rather than being incidental to the subject of the dialogue as a whole, the so-called “digression” is a central passage, as it opposes Protagoras’ relativism and the conventionalism of those half-way who regard the “sage” as the one who knows what is “useful” or “beneficial” for the city, according to a general consensus. In contrast, the philosopher-leader is focused on an epistemological search of objective measurable natures that imitates God’s wisdom and enables him to become genuinely virtuous. I focus my contribution on the specific Platonic relation between wisdom, righteousness and piety in this passage, in light of earlier and middle dialogues such as the Protagoras, the Symposium and the Phaedo. I also attempt to compare Plato’s and Aristotle’s perspectives on this issue to demonstrate how close they are in some senses, in spite of Aristotle’s apparent distance.
The paper argues, against Paul Natorp, Richard Robinson, John Cooper and Myles Burnyeat (among others), that it is mistaken to suppose that Plato intends the question in the Theaetetus, “What is knowledge?”, to be distinguished from, and to be set against, questions in metaphysics. By relying on Parmenides 132b8–c8, and how, in the remainder of that dialogue, Plato takes up the claim of that passage, I show that Plato defends the following view: We cannot consider a noēma (a thought) without immediately considering its proper nooumenon (its object) and asking whether this is a unitary object, a hen. The upshot of this paper is of a piece with the view that, if it means anything to speak of Plato’s metaphysics, it is to speak of the investigations in Plato revolving around ti esti questions – which shows that the Theaetetus, which investigates the ti esti of epistēmē, is an investigation in metaphysics.
The transition from the first to the second definition of knowledge in the Theaetetus, is a transition from sensation to doxa as judgement: the second definition does not fail insofar as doxa is conceived of as a form of sense-perception but insofar as human judgement – even in its “pure” and perception-free exercise discussed in the aviary metaphor – cannot meet the standards of infallible knowledge; the example of the jury exhibits the reason of such a failure: the judges of a court are in a position to inferentially form a correct opinion about a fact they have not witnessed to, but this is not infallible knowledge because the latter is a direct grasp of the object. Indeed, it is the directness, rather than the sensible grasp, what matters in the jury example (which clearly alludes to the theory or recollection). Perception is direct grasp, but not of the “right object”; human, embodied thought has the right object but does not have a direct hold on it, as true knowledge is supposed to have.
The Wax Block Model (WBM) includes an aspect that deserves further study due to its relationship with Plato’s thought and ontological presuppositions. This article aims to investigate if and how much the materiality of wax in WBM implies consequences on the characterization of the cognitive process. An obvious implication is the justifiability of the differences among individual souls. Less attention has been devoted to further implications: the assumption of WBM has effects on the way in which cognitive procedures are described. It will be shown that the epistemological characteristics of the cognitive procedures involved by the WBM correspond to the ontological characteristics of the empirical domain. It will be shown that the role assigned to memory in the WBM does not represent Plato’s view. These considerations will account for the structural insufficiency of the WBM and will provide a new interpretation of its assumption and its subsequent rejection in Plato’s Theaetetus.
This paper offers a detailed reconstruction of the so-called Self-Refutation Argument against Protagoras’ “Measure Doctrine” (MD) for which “every appearance is true” (Theaet. 169e8–171c7): the relevant textual and theoretical issues are critically considered such as: whether the argument is meant to refute an “infallibilist” MD (every appearance is true simpliciter) or a relativist MD (every appearance is true for the subject who has it); whether the argument is meant to refute a “qualified” relativism (MD is true) or a global relativism (MD itself is true for those who believe it); whether the argument is generally successful or not, and how its logical, dialectical, rhetorical and phenomenological dimensions are deeply interwoven; which relations connect MD with the epistemological doctrine that knowledge is perception and with the ontological doctrine that “everything is becoming”; how the “broadening” of MD into the thesis that “all beliefs are true” is crucial for the success of the argument; how the many steps of the argument are inferentially related.