Lecture 10: Dialectic

 

Readings

Supplementary Text

 

I.    Introduction.

    A. Besides judgement, we need discovery through dialectic.
    B. Aristotle covers in Topics.


II.    The Use of Dialectic.
    A. Three uses.
        1. First use: sharpen the mind.
        2. Second use: casual encounter.
        3. Third use: philosophical sciences.
            a. Prepare for conclusions.
            b. Discuss the first principles.
    B. Common to uses.
        1. Dialectic is an ability to discuss anything.
            a. Demonstration restricted to one subject.
        2. Dialectic involves intellectual combat.
        3. Sum up two common points: universal subject and combat.


III.    Tools of dialectic.
    A. Syllogism.
        1. Definition of dialectical syllogism: syllogism producing opinion.
            a. Science yields complete assent.
            b. Opinion yields fear of error.
            c. Doubt is not assent, opinion is assent with fear.
        2. Premisses, matter of dialectical syllogism is not certain.
            a. Starts from probable opinion instead of true and first and immediate. 
            b. Aristotle explain the probable: St. Albert adds likely.
    B. Induction.
        1. What induction is.
            a. Induction goes from individuals to universals.
                (1)    Aristotle's example.
                (2)    My example.
            b. Difference with syllogism: does not conclude with certainty from form.
        2. Use of induction.
            a. Induction is way to first principles.
                (1)    Reflection on example from Posterior Analytics.
                (2)    Example with certain matter: child knows triangle vaguely.
                    (a)    Child see through induction that every triangle has three sides, has insight.
                    (b)    Requirements for induction with certain matter: common nature, predicate is part of definition of subject.
                        i)    Self-evident propositions.
        3. Summing up induction. Individual to universal, probable by form, necessary matter sometimes.


IV.    Conclusion: fair and unfair intellectual combat.

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