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The Riddle of the Early Academy
Harold Fredrik Cherniss (1904–6/18/87), ancient Greek philosophy professor emeritus at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ, wrote many books & articles in his field & was an editor & translator of Plutarch's Moralia for the Loeb Classical Library. His books included works on Aristotle's criticism of Plato & pre-Platonic philosophy.
He was born ...more
He was born ...more
Hardcover, 121 pages
Published 1945 by University of California Press (Berkeley)
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May 07, 2014 Riku Sayuj rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Riku by: AC
Cherniss’ book is a compilation of lectures focused on the conflict arising from the existence of a clear and fundamental discrepancy, between the theory of ideas as it appears in Plato's Dialogues and what Aristotle represents as being Plato's theory of ideas. Cherniss uses his investigation into this discrepancy to shed new light on the nature and working of the early Academy.
He says that Aristotle’s representations, such as the identification of the ideas with ‘nonmathemati ...more
This is a magnificent set of lectures, like the peak of a mountain, about the central problem in Plato's philosophy: how the abstract forms of things like the One and the Good connect to the concrete things of experience in the world, the many, the imperfect etc. This "transition problem" appeared to occupy Plato obsessively in his later dialogues like the Sophist and the Parmenides. Here Cherniss examines Aristotle's contention that the forms were numbers or that ideas of number constituted som ...more
Cherniss is so polemical and thus very entertaining. He argues that apart from geometry, there was no "teaching" in the usual sense (a knower imparting a field of knowledge systematically to those who do not know) while Plato was in charge of the Academy and thus the usual scholarly assumption that there is a set of "unwritten teachings" only partially visible in the (public) dialogues and confined to a select group of people such as Aristotle and Speusippus, is completely mistaken: what they sa ...more
Apr 12, 2009 Erik Graff rated it liked it · review of another edition
Recommends it for: students of the early academy
Recommended to Erik by: Reginald Allen
I read this as a supplement to Reginald Allen's course on Plato's Parmenides at Loyola University Chicago during the first semester of 1981/82.
Harold Fredrik Cherniss (March 11, 1904 – June 18, 1987) was an American classical scholar. He was an expert on the philosophy of Ancient Greece. He wrote several books in the field, and edited and translated works by Plutarch.More about Harold F. Cherniss...