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N. 36 (2020)

Garth W. Green

Nicholas of Cusa’s platonism: its epistemological structure and historiographical significance

PP. 69-89

Nicholas of Cusa’s Platonism: its epistemological Structure and historiographical Significance
The article sets out the method and structures of Cusanus’ philosophical theology by means of an exposition of the work that best defines its specifically neo-Platonic character, the
Apologia doctae ignorantiae. Therein, Cusanusrdepicts his reception and recapitulation of an explicitly “neo-Platonic” tradition, and his rejection of a distinct “neo-Aristotelian” tradition. He makes this distinction with respect to the epistemic and methodological principles of each. In both of these contexts, Cusa asserts a relation of contestation rather than concordance between these two traditions – regarding their methods, and the character of their concepts of God. This relation of contestation is extended to a relation of competition, for relative predominance in his own historical moment. In this way, the Apologia can be seen to be essential to the basic structure and significance of the specifically neo-Platonic character of his theology both epistemically and historiographically.

Keywords: aneo-Platonism, neo-Aristotelianism, theory of knowledge, theological method.


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