Paolo Natali


Being is not a Genus: Aristotle’s Arguments


Various interpreters have taken Aristotle's arguments for the claim that being is not a genus to be no-goers (e.g. Shields 1999, McDaniel 2017). In this talk, I consider the two main arguments of Metaph. K1, 1059b30-34 and Metaph. Β3, 998b22-27, and focus on the second. After discussing three basic interpretations and showing their main problems, I put forward a fourth interpretation that gives Aristotle a valid argument. The argument however crucially relies on certain basic principles concerning definitions and classifications. I conclude with an attempt to defend the philosophical plausibility of these principles. If successful, such attempt provides support for ontological pluralism, the view that things may exist in different ways (or “modes”).

Date / Time / Place

June 22nd / 17:50 / Aula 0A