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Miscellany about Buridan:

John (Jean) Buridan was a 14th century (ca. 1295 - ca. 1358) philosopher who spent significant time studying sophisms (e.g., "This sentence is not true."). In modern times he may well be best known for a sophism with which he had little or no involvement: Buridan's Ass. We will talk more about Buridan's Ass connection later J.

Most historians say Buridan was clearly a genius. His ability to stay focused on extreme detail and minutia exceeded his peers'. Buridan's most significant accomplishment is his Summulae de Dialectica. He wrote his Summa in technical Latin. Until recently, most of it remained untranslated. Our focus in this review is chapter eight (some references say chapter nine Hughes claims it is chapter eight and justifies his claim to your reviewer's satisfaction) of his principia entitled, Sophismata.
Buridan created his own theory of, "The meaning of truth." His theoretical roots lie in Western classical thought; however, he breaks ranks with portions of classical thinking in several ways. In particular he admits truth is often a matter of perspective, i.e., truth is a function of interpretation of (Classical) context. Also, Buridan acknowledges truth is a function of (Classical) time.


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