Jlsperanza at aol.com
Jlsperanza at aol.com
Sat Jan 9 16:36:21 EST 2010
In a message dated 1/8/2010 6:57:50 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
rbj at rbjones.com writes:
It is definitely dialectical. I don't know where he introduces the term,
he uses it in the sense we are considering right at the beginning of the
Thanks for the excellent references, as always. It's good to have a good
Aristotelian just a click away, and you may be interested to know that this
online rhetoric thing does have a thing about the 'dialectic' -- it's an
alphabetic list, a bit of a mixed bag (I cannot paste the html with this
mailer I'm using, though) -- but I excerpted:
The online site goes:
"In Aristotle, dialectic is very similar,"
-- to Plato -- for recall Whitehead, all philosophy, metaphysics or what
have you, is but footnotes to Plato!
"though for him, it represents
something other than a path to Truth with a capital "T." Dialectic for
Aristotle uses cogent logic to reason from widely held or authoritative
Its conclusions are necessary even if its premises are not."
I was thinking that there is such a slight distinction between Greek for
'proof', epideiktikos, as it were (epideixis being the noun) and apodeiktic,
which Kant uses versus problematic and a third term, that it hurts!
"I might add on this topic that in modern logic the distinction which
attempts to draw between proof and derivation is not sustainable.
It rests too heavily on the distinction between an axiom and a rule, and
exactly the same deductive system (i.e. having the same theorems) can be
presented entirely without rules, or entirely without axioms or with a
of the two. For example, it is not unusual for axioms to be treated as
inference rules which require no premises."
Yes, this is a good point. I'm slightly irritated by this author of "Proof
and Disproof in Formal Logic" when he writes -- recall it's an Introduction
for Programmers rather than, pedants! --
"Rain!" is not a claim, hence not provable.
--- A 'rule' is like a non-claim, then. And it is true that Gentzen seems
to be having his cake and eating it too when he has the good old 'axiomata'
of Aristotle (for whom, as for Grice, axios, means 'valuable') turned into
'rules' of the game, which would then not be provable. While I'm not
Kantian enough to think that there is 'proof' in 'practical argument', I am
Gricean enough to think that something like a notion of 'consequentia' holds for
both 'alethic' and 'practica' arguments, to use Grice's jargon.
But the point you make is incredibly right.
"Furthermore, from a sceptical point of view, there is no better reason in
general to trust an inference rule than an axiom, and so no basis for
accepting derivations but denying that there can be proofs."
I see. On the other hand, I think I do understand D. Frederick's reluctance
with 'proving' (versus 'deriving'). I think Grice would probably agree
with D. Frederick. He has "Shropshire" proving the immortality of the soul,
recall -- googlebooks, Aspects of Reason. Since it is so ridiculous to even
think that the soul is immortal (to me), I have to take Grice jocularly. As
if saying that Shropshire (and N. Allott, online, says that's a counterpart
of Hampshire -- recall Grice, "I don't remember this fellow's name. All I
remember is that his surname was the name of an English county")
that the soul is immortal. Based on his equally silly premises -- e.g. that
a chicken -- or chick as I prefer, since I use chicken only for the plural
-- walks post-mortem, etc.
More later, I hope
J. L. Speranza
for the Grice Club.
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