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The Basic Works of Aristotle (Modern Library Classics) Paperback – September 11, 2001
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Top Customer Reviews
This edition has Organon, Physics, On The Heavens, On generation And Corruption, On The Soul, Short Physical Treaties, the Three Animals Treaties, Metaphysics, Ethics, Politics, Rhetoric, and Poetics. You have all of the standards that a student would need, plus the lesser-known works. Therefore, this book has achieved the Aristotelian "mean." It is in perfect balance.
The selection is superb, but the translation is moderate. Being done in the 1940's, it sounds tinny. The "old school" translation is full of Latinisms, archaisms, and is stuffy. All this means that it is unclear, which is deadly to a translation.
The Philosophy of Aristotle (ISBN: 0451528875), on the other hand, is a lively and vibrant. And above all, a clear translation.
I recommend getting the hardcover edition. The paper is sturdy, and not the newsprint like tin the soft cover. Furthermore, it is a high-quality binding, and even comes in a protecting box. This book is made to last, to endure, and to be used.
Strengths: As others have noticed, this is the best one-volume compilation of Aristotle's works. In terms of cost and convenience that makes this an attractive work. For someone interested in the full scope of Aristotle's works, this would be a nice version to have.
Weaknesses: I cannot read the original Greek to compare the translation to the original, but in English, the translation can come off as a bit dry, dated, and uninspired. For me, I also missed the lack of introductory material or other commentary on the works, which are quite difficult for the general reader. In retrospect, as I was interested in gaining in-depth exposure to some of Aristotle's "greatest hits" rather than the entire magnitude of his works, I probably would've been better off buying a smaller number of works separately. Greater cost would've been outweighed by the greater commentary which separate works could've provided. For people reading this material as part of a class, this might not be an important weakness, but it is important for readers like me attempting to gain some insight to the wisdom of Aristotle through independent study.Read more ›
"Of things themselves some are predicable of a subject, and are never present in a subject. Thus 'man' is predicable of the individual man, and is never present in a subject."
to the corresponding line from the Oxford (translated by Ackrill):
"Of things there are (a) some are *said* of a subject but are not *in* any subject. For example, man is said of a subject, the individual man, but is not in any subject."
The Oxford seems to be a smoother translation, and perhaps a little clearer.
Also some of the works in Basic Works are abridged. For example, Chapters 4-33 are omitted from On Sophistical Refutations.
UPDATE 2010-12-13 -----------------
I found the Oxford translation hard going - too hard, really. Note that the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy page on Aristotle mentions that while the Oxford texts are the standard, Irwin and Fine's "Aristotle: Selections" is an "excellent translation", so I wish I got that instead. Really though, what I needed was Adler's "Aristotle for Everybody" - I am reading that now and construct no impediment to its luminous flood.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
There are very few chapters omitted in this collection of works attributed to Aristotle. There is no better single volume edition that is better to own.Published 1 month ago by D.
Okay, so almost nobody buys this book to "read" it. This is an English translation produced by a New York university library of the original Germanic text of Aristotle... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Michelle Hyde
Great product & Great seller. Very Happy with my purchase :))Published 3 months ago by heatherlynn harding
You read it for many reasons. Possible just to know you read him. Of course there's a lot of stuff we know isn't true and there is some logic that isn't even logical, but, lets be... Read morePublished 4 months ago by David H. Eisenberg
Very useful and a good way to reduce the amount of Aristoteles books. But in general I prefer to have every book in a modern well annotated translation. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Marta
These are the main writings of Aristotle! I believe that every intelligent man or a woman should have this book! It is very profound and interesting!Published 14 months ago by Amir Alon