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Extra resources for Aristotle's Criticism of Plato and the Academy
66). On the oihci hand, in illustrating the rule that the definition should contain no supeifluous element, 140*112-6 Au&totle stiesscs the difference between the definitions of Plato and Xenouates. Plato defined soul as that winch moves itself; [hciefoic, (he addition of "number" to the definition is superfluous, for without this addition the definition is piopct and sufficient to describe the essence. If, however, " self-moving " is a proprium, the definition docs not give the essence unless " number " be added.
If no 123 J U M * dil(z\&\tw. of the genus is applicable to the given species, the genus is not applicable eithet: foi ex> ample, neither even nor odd can be predicated of soul; consequently, numbei cannot be the genus of soul. , p 293, 10). by division one shows that all number is either even or odd; if the soul is neither even nor odd, it cannot be a number. «. ) ie Furthermore, number can be shown not to be the genus of soul by the 123A^3*26 t 0 P l c "willc^ investigates whether a given species takes part in something that cannot possibly be predicated of anything subsumed under the supposed genus.
E. 5 These two topics, then, imply the rejection of the theory of ideas on grounds which are made explicit for that purpose in other writings Their purpose, however, is merely to furnish a means of overthrowing definitions of the PJatonists, and their method consists in developing the inconsistencies in'the ideas viewed at once as transcendental existence and immanent essence. This indirect attack upon the theory is in another topic developed from an argument against the use o£ a particular form of dichotomy and generalized into a demonstration that the ideas preclude the possibility of definition by genus and specific differentia because they, as subsisting unities, cannot comprise within themselves the contrary characteristics essential to the subordinate species This topic begins by stating that division of the genus by negation is not to be allowed because in that case the genus would partake of the species and of the differentiae, U3B11-32 tua * ,s ' ^ l u < e r e n t l a a n u species would both be predicated of the genus,—which is absurd (cf Topics 144 A 28-B 3; 121 A 10-19).