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A Journal for Ancient Philosophy and Science

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Volume 52, Issue 4


Aristotle’s Infallible Perception

Benjamin Robert Koons
Published Online: 2018-11-03 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2017-0076


In the De Anima, Aristotle claims that the five senses are infallible about their proper objects. I contend that this claim means that sight is infallible about its proper object in its most specific form, i. e. sight is infallible about red or green and not merely about color in general. This robust claim is justified by Aristotle’s teleological principle that nature does nothing in vain. Additionally, drawing on Aristotle’s comparison of perception and one’s understanding of the essences, I defend a conception of the senses in which the structure of their contents is simple rather than predicative and show how this coheres better with the rest of my interpretation.

Keywords: Aristotle; perception; Sense-Perception; infallibilism; De Anima


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About the article

Published Online: 2018-11-03

Published in Print: 2019-10-25

Citation Information: Apeiron, Volume 52, Issue 4, Pages 415–443, ISSN (Online) 2156-7093, ISSN (Print) 0003-6390, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2017-0076.

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