Averroism

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Averroism

 

a trend in medieval philosophy founded by the 12th-century Arab philosopher ibn-Rushd (Aver-roës). Averroism developed the materialistic tendencies of ibn-Rushd’s interpretation of Aristotle—the idea of the eternity and, consequently, the absence of creation of the world, the mortality of the soul, and the theory of double truth—separating and even opposing knowledge to faith, philosophy to theology. Thus, in Averroism an antitheolog-ical tendency revealed itself—that “joyous free thinking,” which, as Engels put it, came to the Romance peoples from the Arabs and paved the way for the materialism of the 18th century (see his Dialectic of Nature, 1969, p. 7). Averroism was disseminated in Western Europe as a result of the Latin translations of ibn-Rushd’s works; its main representative there was Siger de Brabant, who was criticized by Thomas Aquinas in De unitate intellectus contra Averrois-tas. The persecution of the Averroists by the Catholic Church did not end their influence on European philosophy, as the appearance of the Spanish philosopher Lully in the 13th century demonstrates. In Italy, especially at the University of Padua, Averroism remained an influence until the 16th century. In 1513, Averroism was condemned by the Benevento council.

REFERENCES

Renan, E. Averroes i averroizm. Kiev, 1903. (Translated from French.)
Trakhtenberg, O. Ocherki po istorii zap.-evrop. sr.-vek. filosofii. Moscow, 1957.
Ley, H. Ocherk istorii sr.-vek. materializma. Moscow, 1962. (Translated from German.)
O’Leary, De Lacy E. Arabic Thought and Its Place in History. London, 1939.

S. N. GRIGORIAN