The anarchy of justice: Hesiod’s Chaos, Anaximander’s apeiron, and geometric thought

This article examines Hesiod’s Chaos and Anaximander’s apeiron individually and inrelation to each other through the frame of René Descartes’ notion of natural geometry andthrough bounds and limits in Euclid and Immanuel Kant. Thanks to this frame, it shows that, inhis poetic vision, Hesiod saw in Chaos the act of bounding such that different things can appearwhile, in his speculative vision, Anaximander saw in the apeiron the self-limiting limit ofbounded things, which is to say, time as distinct from the temporality of bounded thingsresulting from Chaos. Thus, together, Chaos and the apeiron present the spatiotemporal order ofthe world. Finally, delving further into Anaximander’s fragment shows that the justice (dike)ruling over all includes the apeiron as the time foundational to temporality, meaning justice iswithout foundation and therefore anarchic.


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Citation Formats
J. E. C. Grıffıth, “The anarchy of justice: Hesiod’s Chaos, Anaximander’s apeiron, and geometric thought,” KİLİKYA JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY, no. 1, pp. 1–16, 2022, Accessed: 00, 2022. [Online]. Available: