juillet 5, 2007

L’expérience de pensée de la semaine

Filed under: Uncategorized — mokawi @ 7:06

Comme le remarque John Searle, les philosophes ont parfois des expériences de pensée assez étrange. Je croyais que ça ne valait que pour le courant analytique (contemporain anglo-américain), mais à ce qu’il paraît, j’avais tord:

Others, as Empedocles, say that the differentiation takes place in the uterus; for he says that if the uterus is hot or cold what enters it becomes male or female, the cause of the heat or cold being the flow of the catamenia, according as it is colder or hotter, more ‘antique’ or more ‘recent’. Democritus of Abdera also says that the differentiation of sex takes place within the mother; that however it is not because of heat and cold that one embryo becomes female and another male, but that it depends on the question which parent it is whose semen prevails,—not the whole of the semen, but that which has come from the part by which male and female differ from one another. This is a better theory, for certainly Empedocles has made a rather light-hearted assumption in thinking that the difference between them is due only to cold and heat, when he saw that there was a great difference in the whole of the sexual parts, the difference in fact between the male pudenda and the uterus. For suppose two animals already moulded in embryo, the one having all the parts of the female, the other those of the male; suppose them then to be put into the uterus as into an oven, the former when the oven is hot, the latter when it is cold; then on the view of Empedocles that which has no uterus will be female and that which has will be male. But this is impossible. Thus the theory of Democritus would be the better of the two, at least as far as this goes, for he seeks for the origin of this difference and tries to set it forth; whether he does so well or not is another question.

Aristote, On the Generation of Animals, trad. A. Platt, Université d’Adelaide, 2007

There ain’t nathin’ like the smell of cookin’ foetuses in th’ morning, I c’n tell you that!


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