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Aristotle on the Matter of FormA Feminist Metaphysics of Generation$
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Adriel M. Trott

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474455220

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474455220.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 17 April 2021

Semen, Menses, Blood: Material in Generation

Semen, Menses, Blood: Material in Generation

(p.143) 5 Semen, Menses, Blood: Material in Generation
Aristotle on the Matter of Form

Adriel M. Trott

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter presents the central argument of the book: the material capacities of semen contribute to its capacity to animate menses. The chapter considers how semen’s material produces formal capacities by comparing semen to blood: blood is hot through dependence on something external to it, while semen’s heat is internal to it. This internal power is what makes it formal power. The case is made for how matter can have power without being teleological. The particulars of how semen causes by comparison to the positions of pansomatism and preformationism, which Aristotle rejects, are laid out and the central aspects of the material composition of semen are considered with a focus on the role of vital heat. Vital heat is a source of fostering life beyond the generation of animals, in stomachs, earth and sun, which points to a further sense of its materiality.

Keywords:   Elements, elemental forces, semen, menses, concoction, vital heat, matter, teleology

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