Dialectic after Plato and Aristotle

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Thomas Bénatouïl, Katerina Ierodiakonou
Cambridge University Press, Nov 15, 2018 - Philosophy
Ancient dialectic started as an art of refutation and evolved into a science akin to our logic, grammar and linguistics. Scholars of ancient philosophy have traditionally focused on Plato's and Aristotle's dialectic without paying much attention to the diverse conceptions and uses of dialectic presented by philosophers after the classical period. To bridge this gap, this volume aims at a comprehensive understanding of the competing Hellenistic and Imperial definitions of dialectic and their connections with those of the classical period. It starts from the Megaric school of the fourth century BCE and the early Peripatetics, via Epicurus, the Stoics, the Academic sceptics and Cicero, to Sextus Empiricus and Galen in the second century CE. The philosophical foundations and various uses of dialectic are closely analysed and systematically examined together with the numerous objections that were raised against them.


Megara and Dialectic
Dialectic in the Early Peripatos
Epicurus on Dialectic
Dialectic as a Subpart of Stoic Philosophy
Stoic Dialectic and Its Objects
Dialectic in the Hellenistic Academy
Pithana and probabilia
Terminology and Practice of Dialectic in Ciceros Letters
The Sceptics Modes of Argumentation
Galen and Middle Platonists on Dialectic and Knowledge
Index of Names

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About the author (2018)

Thomas Bénatouïl is Professor of Ancient Philosophy at the Université de Lille. He has published two books in French on Stoicism and many papers in French and English on Hellenistic and Imperial philosophy and on the contemporary reception of Stoicism. He is currently working on the Academy from Plato to Cicero.

Katerina Ierodiakonou is Professor of Ancient Philosophy at the University of Athens and at the University of Geneva. She has published extensively on ancient and Byzantine philosophy, especially in the areas of epistemology and logic. She is currently working on a monograph about ancient theories of colour, as well as on an edition, translation and commentary of Theophrastus' De sensibus and of Michael Psellos' paraphrase of Aristotle's De interpretatione.

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