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Aristotle's Logic of Education

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Richard W. Bauman

In Aristotle's Logic of Education, Richard Bauman makes a contribution to both the history of logic and the philosophy of education. He argues that Aristotle, in the course of laying out his system of syllogistic inference, intends to guide the way science is taught, rather than how scientific research is conducted. The teacher is supposed to proceed by the method of demonstration from the appropriate necessary premises. Dr. Bauman contends that the problems raised in Plato's Meno form the background for understanding Aristotle's presentation of logic in his Posterior Analytics. In light of Bauman's interpretation, a fresh approach should be taken to the recurrent claim that syllogistic reasoning always involves committing the fallacy of petitio principii. Finally, the author criticizes Aristotle's attempt to reduce both reasoning and teaching to singular patterns. In particular, Bauman argues that Aristotle fails to account adequately for the acquisition of first principles.