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Dialectic In Gersonides' Biblical Commentaries

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents the results of a study of Gersonides' notion of dialectic, as presented in his biblical commentaries, and outline its main features. Gersonides is especially interested in dialectic because it is the only method that can be used in sciences that cannot employ absolute demonstrations and demonstrations per signum. Drawing on Aristotles Metaphysics and on his understanding of Ibn Rušds commentaries on the Topics, especially the Middle Commentary, along with his interpretation of the remarks about the usefulness of three types of dialecticdialectic as a method of verification, dialectic as a method of examination, and dialectic as training (i.e., as mental exercise)in his biblical commentaries Gersonides offers a complete theory of dialectic as an investigative tool that makes it possible to acquire true and certain scientific knowledge in metaphysics, politics, and physics.

Keywords: Aristotles Metaphysics; dialectic; Gersonides biblical commentaries



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