Department of Philosophy



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Alexander P.D. Mourelatos (University of Texas, Austin)

will be presenting the 2016 Vlastos Lecture on

Three Critiques of Anthropomorphism in Early Greek Philosophy 

THURSDAY, October 6th, 2016

WATSON HALL, ROOM 517 @ 4:00 p.m.

Anthropomorphism is rife in Hesiod's Theogony and in mythical narratives of world-origins. The lecture explores the critique of anthropomorphism that is either explicitly attested or persuasively implied in the preserved evidence (fragments from actual writings or testimony retrieved from later sources) concerning the thought primarily of three sixth- to fifth- century bce pre-Socratics:  Xenophanes of Colophon, Heraclitus of Ephesus, and Parmenides of Elea.  Examining the thought of these three pioneers in western thought under the prism of anthropomorphism we come to perceive important conceptual affinities and contrasts that are not as well captured when the search is for such more familiar contrasts as myth vs. rational thought, religion vs. science, traditional vs. heterodox outlook, rationalism vs. empiricism.


*If you have accessibility requirements, please contact Judy Vanhooser (