Aristotle - b. Some bronze (which was shapeless) becomes a...

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Aristotle’s Account Aristotle’s account is contained in Physics I.7. He insists that there must be three basic ingredients in every case of change. (Plato’s treatment only mentions two: a pair of opposites). In addition to a pair of opposites, there must be an underlying subject of change . The basic case of change involves a pair of opposed or contrary properties and a subject that loses one of them and gains the other. But Aristotle does not even insist that there be an opposed pair of properties (191a6-7): In another way, however, there need not be two [contraries]; for just one of the contraries is enough, by its absence or presence, to produce the thing . So the ingredients Aristotle insists on are: an underlying subject , a form (i.e., a positive property) and a lack (or privation ) of that form. Aristotle’s examples illustrate these ingredients: a. A man who was unmusical becomes musical.
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Unformatted text preview: b. Some bronze (which was shapeless) becomes a statue. In case (a), the subject is man , the form is musical and the privation is unmusical . In case (b), the subject is bronze , the form is statue and the privation is shapeless . The subjectthe man, or the bronzepersists through the change. Of the other terms involved, the earlier ones (unmusicality, shapelessness) cease to exist, while the later ones (musicality, the statue) come into existence. These were cases of coming into being (generation), since lacks or privations were replaced by forms. Ceasing to be (destruction) occurs when a form is replaced by a privationwhen matter is deprived of form. This would happen, for example, when a statue is melted down into a shapeless pool of bronze. The bronze persists, but the statue has ceased to exist....
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This note was uploaded on 11/14/2011 for the course PHI PHI2010 taught by Professor Jorgerigol during the Fall '09 term at Broward College.

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