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This tension between formal and efficient cause explanations is especially evident in Aristotle's discussions of events such as thunder and eclipses in Posterior Analytics B 8-10. In the later chapters of the book Ferejohn defends a novel interpretation of Aristotle's manner of treating these phenomena that depends on his fourfold classification of scientific questions and the presupposition relations he believes to hold among them. The final chapter turns to the role of definition in Aristotle's mature ontology. Ferejohn argues that in Metaphysics Z 17 he proposes a treatment of kinds of composite substances parallel to that of thunder and eclipses in the Posterior Analytics, and that this treatment is a crucial element in his sustained argument in Metaphysics Z and H that such kinds are definable unities.
Michael T. Ferejohn is an Associate Professor of Philosophy and Classical Studies at Duke University. He has held visiting positions at the University of Pittsburgh and Tufts University, and a Mellon Faculty Fellowship at Havard University. He is the author of The Origins of Aristotelian Science (Yale University Press, 1991) as well as numerous journal articles on Plato and Aristotle.