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The Continuous and the DiscreteAncient Physical Theories from a Contemporary Perspective$
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Michael J. White

Print publication date: 1992

Print ISBN-13: 9780198239529

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198239529.001.0001

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Aristotle on Time and Locomotion: Physics and Metaphysics

Aristotle on Time and Locomotion: Physics and Metaphysics

(p.73) 2 Aristotle on Time and Locomotion: Physics and Metaphysics
The Continuous and the Discrete

Michael J. White

Oxford University Press

This chapter further explores various metaphysical features of Aristotle's discussion of time and local motion, as well as the relation between these metaphysical features and the formal, structural properties of continuous magnitudes. In Aristotle's view, a stretch of time is not formed by a dense and Dedekind-continuous linear array of instants. His ontology of time is that of ‘foundationless’ intervals. The first section pursues the Aristotelian metaphysics of time, distinguishing a topological and a metrical component of his account of time in the last part of Book 4 of the Physics. The second section turns to Aristotle's metaphysical analysis of local motion, looking at the formulaic metaphysical account of kinēseis, and the Aristotelian identity conditions for local motions.

Keywords:   time, kinēseis, metaphysics, identity conditions, Physics

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