The Velawesomeraptor Himself (clayrobeson) wrote,
The Velawesomeraptor Himself
clayrobeson

Pearls of wisdom from Aristotle...


  1. A man's character disposes him to act in certain ways, but he actually acts only in response to the changing circumstances of his life, and it is his thought (or perception) that shows him what to seek and what to avoid in each situation.
  2. The common motive... accounts for the main movement... [and] must be instantly intelligible to an audience....
  3. The word he uses there to cover any movement-of-spirit is energeia. In his studies of human conduct he speaks of three different forms of energeia, which he calls praxis, poiesis, and theoria. In praxis the motive is "to do" something... In poiesis the motive is "to make" something... In theoria the motive is "to grasp and understand" some truth...
  4. ...the conscious purpose with which they start is redefined after each unforeseen contingency is suffered; and at the end, in the light of hindsight, we see the truth of what we have been doing.
  5. "The best form of recognition is coincident with a Reversal of the Situation, as in the Oedipus," says Aristotle (XI.2). And it is due also to the fact that this moment of enlightenment was inherent in the whole conception of the Tragic Plot...
  6. The action of perceiving, passing from ignorance to knowledge, is near the heart of tragedy, and the masters of that art all know how to "arrange the incidents" in such a way as to represent it on the stage.
  7. He who hears the tale told will thrill with horror and melt to pity at what takes place.
  8. In tragedy, character is often destroyed; and at that moment we can glimpse "life and action" at a deeper level.

From the introductory essay to Aristotle's Poetics, written by Francis Fergusson.
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