Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy, Volume 54$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Victor Caston

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198825128

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198825128.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use.date: 19 May 2022

‘Appearing Equal’ at Phaedo 74 B 4 – C 6: an Epistemic Interpretation

‘Appearing Equal’ at Phaedo 74 B 4 – C 6: an Epistemic Interpretation

Chapter:
(p.1) ‘Appearing Equal’ at Phaedo 74 B 4 – C 6: an Epistemic Interpretation
Source:
Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy, Volume 54
Author(s):

Thomas M. Tuozzo

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198825128.003.0001

The argument at Phaedo 74 B 4‐C 6 that the equal itself is ‘something different from’ sets of physical equals depends on Leibniz's Law: there is a property that perceptible equals have that the equal itself does not have. What I call the ‘epistemic interpretation’ holds that the property is an epistemic one: having appeared unequal. The ‘ontological interpretation’ holds that the property is not epistemic, but simply the property of being unequal (that is: physical equals suffer the compresence of opposites, while the equal itself does not). The most natural reading of the text favours the epistemic interpretation; scholarly support for the ontological interpretation is based on the widely held view that on the epistemic interpretation the argument is manifestly invalid. But this view implicitly relies on an impoverished sense of ‘appearing’ as equivalent to ‘being thought’. Drawing on an analogy with colour perception, I elaborate an experiential sense of ‘appearing’ which makes Plato's argument on the epistemic interpretation philosophically defensible.

Keywords:   Plato, Phaedo, Forms, particulars, sensibles, appearance, equality, metaphysics, perception, compresence

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .