THE I TATTI RENAISSANCE LIBRARY
Cover: Dialectical Disputations, Volume 1: Book I, from Harvard University PressCover: Dialectical Disputations, Volume 1 in HARDCOVER

The I Tatti Renaissance Library 49

Dialectical Disputations, Volume 1

Book I

Lorenzo Valla

Edited and translated by Brian P. Copenhaver

Lodi Nauta

Add to Cart

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$29.95 • £19.95 • €21.00

ISBN 9780674055766

Publication Date: 08/13/2012

Short

Lorenzo Valla (1407–1457) ranks among the greatest scholars and thinkers of the Renaissance. He secured lasting fame for his brilliant critical skills, most famously in his exposure of the “Donation of Constantine,” the forged document upon which the papacy based claims to political power. Lesser known in the English-speaking world is Valla’s work in the philosophy of language—the basis of his reputation as the greatest philosopher of the humanist movement.

Dialectical Disputations, translated here for the first time into any modern language, is his principal contribution to the philosophy of language and logic. With this savage attack on the scholastic tradition of Aristotelian logic, Valla aimed to supersede it with a new logic based on the actual historical usage of classical Latin and on a commonsense approach to semantics and argument. Valla provides a logic that could be used by lawyers, preachers, statesmen, and others who needed to succeed in public debate—one that was stylistically correct and rhetorically elegant, and thus could dispense with the technical language of the scholastics, a “tribe of Peripatetics, perverters of natural meanings.” Valla’s reformed dialectic became a milestone in the development of humanist logic and contains startling anticipations of modern theories of semantics and language.

Volume 1 contains Book I, in which Valla refutes Aristotle’s logical works on the categories, transcendentals, and predicables, with excursions into natural and moral philosophy and theology.

Recent News

From Our Blog

Cover: A Shoppers’ Paradise: How the Ladies of Chicago Claimed Power and Pleasure in the New Downtown, by Emily Remus, from Harvard University Press

Going Downtown

As a child in Chicago, Emily Remus was enchanted by the sights and sounds of its downtown. Here she tells how those early experiences influenced her in writing A Shoppers’ Paradise, a book about how women in turn-of-the-century Chicago used their consumer power to challenge male domination of public spaces and stake their own claim to downtown

‘manifold glories of classical Greek and Latin’

The digital Loeb Classical Library (loebclassics.com) extends the founding mission of James Loeb with an interconnected, fully searchable, perpetually growing virtual library of all that is important in Greek and Latin literature.