Monday, February 27, 2006

Assignment for 2/29

Please read Max Black's article, "Achilles and the Tortoise". It is available from the course website. In it he claims (and subsequently argues for) the following:

"(Though a) mathematical solution (to Zeno's paradox of Achilles and the Tortoise) has behind it the authority of Descartes and Pierce and Whitehead--to mention no lesser names--. . . I cannot see that it goes to the heart of the matter. It tells us, correctly, when and where Achilles and the tortoise will meet, if they meet; but it fails to show that Zeno was wrong in claiming that they could not meet."

(Black 1951: 122; editing by Chris Tillman, emphasis in the original.)

Is Black's suggestion that a purely mathematical solution is inadequate correct? Why or why not? For next class, please briefly state and explain/defend your answer.


Post a Comment

<< Home