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The Core Curriculum

Martha Nussbaum on Aristotle: Sections 1-5, c. 1988

Martha Nussbaum on Aristotle: Sections 1-5

Caption: “In this program, the far-reaching philosophical ideas of Plato's star pupil are examined by noted Brown University professor Martha Nussbaum. Aristotle overcomes Plato's dualism of the intelligible and sensible worlds with his principle of inseparable nature of eternal matter and form. The principles of potentiality and actuality are examined, along with Aristotle's theory of the four causes—material, formal, efficient, and final—which account for changes in all things. These theories of constancy and change are credited with the progress of scientific inquiry over the ages.”

Although this video is not directly about the Politics, its discussion of Aristotle’s concepts of the four causes will help to make sense of his views regarding the nature and functioning of the city-state.

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