Disputation and Logic in the Medieval Treatises De Modo Opponendi et Respondendi
In 1980 L. M. de Rijk edited some texts connected with medieval disputation (Die mittelaterlichen Traktate De modo opponendi et respondendi), towards which he showed a strikingly contemptuous attitude. The reason for his contempt was that the treatises did not fit the obligationes and sophismata tradition. In this article I focus on the original version, the Thesaurus Philosophorum, to highlight the distinction of this family of treatises with respect to the “modern” tradition. First, I study the features of the disputation that can be recognised through the collection of fallacious arguments contained in the Thesaurus. Second, I briefly examine the contents of the treatise and their arrangement, showing that they are closely related to the kind of disputation in question. I hope to support the idea that neither the technique of disputation nor the contents and their arrangement deserve a straightforward rejection.