The Evolution of the Concept of Psyche from Homer to Aristotle

Katona Gabor, Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology, 2002, 22, 1, 28-44.

Abstract: In the following essay the author examines those aspects of the evolution of the concept of psyche from Homer to Aristotle that show striking dissimilarities with our modern understanding of the soul/mind. In this analysis, the author gives more room to the problem of the Homeric soul-words, for Homer’s picture of the soul seems to be especially challenging for our conceptual schemes. The guiding suspicion during this study is that there is a temptation for modern students of this subject to suppose a greater continuity between their understanding of what it is to be a soul or mind and ancient thinkers’ grasp of the same experiential field than is warranted by available textual evidence.