Logica Universalis

, Volume 10, Issue 2–3, pp 143–156 | Cite as

Platonic Contrariety (enantia): Ancestor of the Aristotelian Notion of Contradiction (antiphasis)?

  • Geneviève LachanceEmail author


The aim of the present paper is to analyse the archeology of the concept of contradiction, more precisely in Plato, and to reveal the influence that the latter had on Aristotle’s reflection on contradiction and contrariety. This paper will show that it is possible to find examples of a notion of contradiction in Plato’s refutative dialogues, in which Socrates is described as refuting his interlocutors by demonstrating the contrary of their initial thesis. However, Plato never used the word antiphasis to name the act of contradicting oneself (this word seems to be the invention of Aristotle), but preferred the expression enantia legein heautôi, which means “to say the contrary to oneself”.


Plato History of logic contrary contradiction principle of non-contradiction antilogic 

Mathematics Subject Classification

01A20 03B05 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Université libre de BruxellesBrusselsBelgium

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