Re: Patriarchy: Re: What Matriarchy?

Stephen Barnard (
Mon, 05 Aug 1996 07:02:07 -0800

Marty G. Price wrote:
> (**sigh**) What ever happened to the liberal arts education? That wasn't
> post-modernism I was talking about, it was introductory philosophy, the
> stuff you learn as a lower-division undergraduate. You have just boldly
> proclaimed one of the two acknowledged founders of the Western
> philosophical tradition "*wrong*". You ever heard the phrase,
> "...footnotes to Plato"? Well, they start with Aristotle.

The premise of this thread is clearly aligned with the postmodern agenda.
Bringing in Aristotle to make a point doesn't suddenly shift it to Classical
Philosophy. I wasn't claiming that Aristotle was wrong about every single
little thing -- only about his "theory" of gravitation.

> If you do a little study, you can trace that empirical tradition you
> naively follow (and I do mean naively) from Aristotle's attempt to
> discover and delineate causes through Francis Bacon's work with the
> inductive method, through Newton, and etc. to the present.

An "attempt" to discover something doesn't amount to success at discovering
it. Aristotle had an amazing blind spot: He was either ignorant of or
comtemptuous of the experimental method. His writings are full of howlers
that a simple experiment can refute.

I'm not a naive realist or empiricist, but I do reject essentialism. I guess
I'd say that Quine is my favorite philosopher, but mostly I think that
philosophy is an amusing waste of time, and that most serious and successful
scientists don't bother with it.

Steve Barnard