Aristotle's Refinements of Plato's Theory
This chapter examines Aristotle's refinements of Plato's theory of composition. Aristotle is generally sympathetic to the Platonic outlook, but differs over the details. In some cases, Aristotle's more nuanced approach avoids certain of the downfalls of Plato's theory. In other cases, however, the added complexities introduced by Aristotle actually lead to further difficulties of their own. Given that the positive account of composition that is presented in Chapter 7 is broadly Aristotelian in spirit, the overarching goal of this chapter is to find inspiration in Aristotle's insights into matters of mereology, and to separate those features in his treatment of parts and wholes that are timeless and can be taken over by the modern-day mereologist from those that are best left behind.
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