Nothing Exists. A History of the Philosophy of Non-being

by Michael Bakaoukas, M.Sc., Ph.D.


Formats

Softcover
$33.95
Hardcover
$49.95
Softcover
$33.95

Book Details

Language :
Publication Date : 10/7/2002

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 5.5x8.5
Page Count : 146
ISBN : 9781401069100
Format : Hardcover
Dimensions : 5.5x8.5
Page Count : 146
ISBN : 9781401069117

About the Book

The philosophical issue of non-being has stayed alive down the centuries. Ancient Greek philosophers used to treat not-being as chimera. The chimera is philosophers´ choice of example when they need a composite non-existent mythological animal (Iliad 6.181). As a matter of fact, Aristotle prefers the goat-stag (tragelaphos) and the centaur. In the Hellenistic period, the centaur, the scylla and the chimera are the standard examples. In medieval texts the chimera is more popular than any of the other composite animals. For centuries philosophers have used not-being and chimera as experimental BEINGS, keeping them on a minimum of being. In a way not-being and chimera owe them their "life". Do Centaur, Goat-Stag and Pegasus, who are not-being’s kin, exist? They do certainly have a place in man´s memory. In this book I consider the ancient problem of non-being, the problem whether there are non-existent objects. My purpose is (a) to make a comparative, historical survey of the philosophy of non-being and then (b) to expound the first philosophical analysis of “not-being” found in the treatise On What is Not, which was written by Gorgias the sophist in the 5th c. BC. Gorgias’ treatise is the origin and the beginning of the philosophical debate over non-being, which continues to take place up to the present day. In this way, we shall get to know and understand what non-beings are on the basis of the most authoritative interpretations


About the Author

Dr. Michael Bakaoukas studied Ancient and Modern Philosophy at the University of Ioannina, Greece, receiving his Bachelor’s degree in 1993. He received his Master’s in Philosophy from the Philosophy Department of the University of Edinburgh, in 1995 working with Dr Theodore Scaltsas at Project Archelogos. He obtained his PhD in Ancient Greek Philosophy from the Department of Methodology, History and Theory of Science of the University of Athens, Greece. Dr Bakaoukas is teaching philosophy at the University of Piraeus, Greece and at the Technical and Vocational Teacher Training Institute (SELETE), Greece.