17 - The One Over Many Argument 1. According to Aristotle,...

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The “One Over Many” Argument 1. According to Aristotle, the Platonists had an argument for the existence of Forms that he called the “One Over Many.” Plato himself never used this title, although he sometimes described a Form as being a “one over many.” 2. The idea behind the One Over Many is probably best exemplified in Plato’s dialogues in the principle enunciated at Rep . 596a: We customarily hypothesize a single form in connection with each collection of many things to which we apply the same name. 3. The idea is this: If there is a set of things all of which have the same “name,” then there is a Form for that set. By “name” here we should probably understand “general term” or “predicate” (to use the word that Aristotle invented for this kind of “name”) - that is, a term that can be applied in the same way to many different things that all have something in common, a term like ‘bed’ or ‘table’. Cf. the next speech in Rep . 596a-b: Then let’s now take any of the manys you like. For example, there are many beds
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2011 for the course PHYSICS 110 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '09 term at UC Davis.

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