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Hi MrP, assuming that you might take a look at these sentences. If you have no background in philosophy, how do you know about Sextus Empiricus? Well, here are some other doubts I have:

1) "This is the only passage of A's work which presents the notion of philanthropy as the key to the understanding of the Skeptic's argumentation" (key to?).

2) "Unperturbedness closely followed by chance he who suspended judgment".

3) "There are other texts which make reference to the notion of unperturbedness as the Skeptic's end" (is "make reference" ok?).

4) "He affirmst that the Skeptic's peace of mind is boring or produces no enjoyment" (is "produce enjoyment" correct?).

5) "This influence may perfectly well be an aspect of the third factor he explains" (is "may perfeclty well be" correct?)

6) "If this is so, a person could perfectly well be a Skeptic without having any concern for the welfare of others" (idem 5).

7) "If this is correct, he would be aware that..." (In this case, can I use the present tense with the "would" in the second clause?).

8) "I don't think that such an adherence necessarily entails the complete basis of action upon tradition and law" (basis?).

9) "In section one, I shall analyze the philanthropy underlying his argumentative practice" (Can you think of a synonym for "underlying"?).

Thanks,

All the best wishes,

Sextus
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Hello Sextus

Well, if I have a background, it's probably in Classics, so that's where I ran into
Sextus E. But what little I knew has mostly gone. Just a few ragged synapses
dangling in otherwise vacant darkness...

These are mostly minor changes, so don't worry too much:

1) Change to: "as key to".

2) "Unperturbedness closely followed by chance he who suspended judgment".
I'm not quite sure of the intended sense here. Does it mean: "Unperturbedness attends upon the man who suspends judgement"?

At this point I am struck by a sudden doubt as to whether you intended 'equanimity' with 'unperturbedness'. Personally I prefer the latter. But it is a very rare word in English.

3) That's fine. "There are other texts that make etc" is slightly better.

4) "He affirmst that the Skeptic's peace of mind is boring or produces no enjoyment" (is "produce enjoyment" correct?). Perhaps: 'without real pleasure'? Difficult to say, without knowing how you're using 'pleasure' or 'enjoyment' in context.

5) That's fine, but maybe too affirmative for your context. Perhaps: "This influence could well be an aspect..."

6) Fine - 'perfectly well' brings out the emphasis here!

7) It sounds as if it ought to be: "If this were correct, he would be aware that..."; but difficult to tell without the full sentence.

8) "I don't think that such an adherence necessarily entails the complete basis of action upon tradition and law" (basis?). It doesn't sound quite right. Perhaps: 'Such an adherence would not necessarily mean that action was wholly based on tradition and law'. But I may have unknowingly distorted your meaning.

9) "In section one, I shall analyze the philanthropy underlying his argumentative practice" (Can you think of a synonym for "underlying"?).
'Argumentative practice': not 'method of argument/disputation'?
For underlying: '..the basis in philanthopy of his...'; '...philanthropy that underlies...'; '...philanthropy upon which his...is based...'.

Actually, I think your paper may have repaired a few of those synapses for me...

MrP
Hi MrP, thanks for your answers. I have some more questions.

1) "Unperturbedness closely followed by chance he who suspended judgment". This is actually a translation of a Greek text. A translator renders it thus: "When they suspended judgment, tranquillity followed fortuistously". But this is not literal. If I knew that you know Greek, I could transliterate the text.

2) "I don't think that such an adherence necessarily entails that action must be wholly based upon tradition and law". Maybe like this is acceptable?

3) "Whether the Skeptic's peace of mind is boring or enjoyable depends on each individual psychological makeup". Here I'm referring to the view of an author who says that the Skeptic "will have nothing to enjoy in life". But I don't know how to resume this.

4) "We are passive with regard to our bodily affections in the sense that at least up to now we have not been able to eliminate completely the affections of hunger and thirst, and hence to stop having the desire for food and drink. On the contrary, a person's acting in accordance with the laws and customs of his community and a given skill has not appeared to be wholly inevitable and inescapable". Is this clear?

5) "Even with this interpretative keys in hand, I recognize that it is not always easy to account for all the texts in which he seems to adopt a negative dogmatic outlook" ("interpretative keys in hand"?).

6) "He does not really espouse the conclusions of his arguments" (espouse?).

7) "A Skeptic's individualism would be the result of his having grown up in a rather individualistic society or of his having been raised in a way that has made him regard philanthropy as a naïve attitude". I'm not sure about the verbs in general.

8) "Consider an action, say, a murder. In this case..." (is murder an action? I cannot think of any other noun).

Thanks and good night (or probably good morning for you)

Sextus
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Hello Sextus

1) Yes please, could you transliterate this one? I think I know what the
translator means, but would like to check!

2) Fine.

3) That sounds fine. 'On each individual's make-up.'

4) "We are passive with regard to our bodily affections in the sense that
at least up to now we have not been able to eliminate completely the
affections of hunger and thirst, and hence to stop having the desire for
food and drink." This is clear, but I'm not sure 'affection' is quite
the right word. Perhaps 'bodily functions'?

"On the contrary, a person's acting in accordance with the laws and
customs of his community and a given skill has not appeared to be
wholly inevitable and inescapable". I don't quite get the 'given skill' - ?

5) I'm not sure about the keys; 'even with the aid of this key to his
meaning', perhaps.

6) Difficult without knowing the context. 'Wholeheartedly embrace'?

7) No, I think the meaning is clear.

8) 'Consider an action - say, deliberate homicide...' perhaps?

MrP
Hi. Here they go:

1) "epischonti de autô tychikôs parêkolouthêsen hê en toîs doxastoîs ataraxia". "And unperturbedness in matters of opinion closely followed by change he who suspended judgment".

2) "At least most of the Skeptic's arguments are ad hominem, that is, they work from the premises accepted by his dogmatic rivals. Hence, he does not really embrace (?) the conclusions of such arguments. We may think that this is what happens in the texts of AD V in question". Maybe now, with the context, is clearer.

3) With regard to the sentence in which I use "interpretative keys", before it I put forward two possible explanations that may explain away the appearance of dogmatism that certain texts present.

4) The "skill" refer to "techne" (which in the context must be translated as "skill"). Maybe I should rather say "a certain skill" or "a particular skill"?

Thanks. Best,

Sextus
Hello Sextus

1) "epischonti de autô tychikôs parêkolouthêsen hê en toîs doxastoîs ataraxia": now
it becomes a little clearer.

Perhaps:

'And unperturbedness in matters of opinion followed as if by chance the man who had
suspended judgement.' (Or: 'attended as if by chance'.)

Sometimes you find 'ataraxia' translated by serenity, tranquillity, equanimity,
quietude...Even ataraxia.

2) You're right, 'embrace' doesn't work. Why not simply 'accept'?

3) Now I get it. Maybe: 'Even with these interpretative keys to hand...'

4) 'Skill' sounds slightly odd, after 'law' and 'custom'. In context, would it be possible
to translate 'techne' as 'the arts'; or 'profession'? Plato sometimes uses it like that. But
keep 'skill' if you're happier with it.

MrP
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Hi MrP,

After posting the message today another possibility occured to me, taking into account the previous sentence of the paragraph, which I give you here:

"For, having begun to philosophize with the object of deciding between appearances and apprehending which are true and which false so as to become unperturbed, the Skeptic ended up in the disagreement of equal force; being unable to decide it he suspended judgment." Then comes the phrase we have been discussing. This is why I thought I could translate it as follows: "And unperturbedness in matters of opinion closely followed him by chance while he suspended judgment (or: when he suspended judgment)". Also, there's another text very similar to this: "The Skeptics hoped to acquire unperturbedness by deciding the anomaly of the things which appear and are thought, but being unable to do this they suspended judgment. And, as if by chance, unperturbedness closely followed those who suspended judgment (or rather: followed them while they suspended judgment) (epischoûsi de autoîs oîon tychikôs hê ataraxia parêkolouthêsen), as a shadow a body". I don't know if in the first text I should only say "by chance" since in the second it is used "oîon", that is, "as if".

By the way, I think that "to hand" in the sense of that which is near where one is and then available to use, is British. Do you know whether it is also used in American E., because the article is for an American journal.

Sextus
A] Perhaps: 'Even with the help of these interpretative keys...'
B] '...the Skeptic ended up in the disagreement of equal force; being unable to decide it he suspended judgment.' There's something slightly awkward in the phrasing here; would the
original text support:

'...the S. at last found himself between two opinions of equal force; being unable to
decide, he suspended judgement'?
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