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Happy Lives and the Highest Good

  • Kartonierter Einband
  • 248 Seiten
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Presents an approach to a debate about Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics: whether it coherently argues that the best life for humans ... Weiterlesen
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Beschreibung

Presents an approach to a debate about Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics: whether it coherently argues that the best life for humans is one devoted to a single activity, namely philosophical contemplation. This book argues that in Aristotle's view, we may act for the sake of an end not just by instrumentally bringing it but also by approximating it.

"A fine book. Anyone interested in Aristotle's ethics should read it."---Norman O. Dahl, Philosophy in Review

Autorentext
Gabriel Richardson Lear is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Chicago.

Klappentext

Gabriel Richardson Lear presents a bold new approach to one of the enduring debates about Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics: the controversy about whether it coherently argues that the best life for humans is one devoted to a single activity, namely philosophical contemplation. Many scholars oppose this reading because the bulk of the Ethics is devoted to various moral virtues--courage and generosity, for example--that are not in any obvious way either manifestations of philosophical contemplation or subordinated to it. They argue that Aristotle was inconsistent, and that we should not try to read the entire Ethics as an attempt to flesh out the notion that the best life aims at the "monistic good" of contemplation.

In defending the unity and coherence of the Ethics, Lear argues that, in Aristotle's view, we may act for the sake of an end not just by instrumentally bringing it about but also by approximating it. She then argues that, for Aristotle, the excellent rational activity of moral virtue is an approximation of theoretical contemplation.

Thus, the happiest person chooses moral virtue as an approximation of contemplation in practical life. Richardson Lear bolsters this interpretation by examining three moral virtues--courage, temperance, and greatness of soul--and the way they are fine. Elegantly written and rigorously argued, this is a major contribution to our understanding of a central issue in Aristotle's moral philosophy.



Inhalt

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ix CHAPTER ONE Introduction 1 CHAPTER TWO The Finality Criterion 8 1. Introduction 8 2. What It Is to Be an Aristotelian Telos 11 3. Teleology in the Nicomachean Ethics 15 4. Teleology, Desire, and Middle-Level Ends 31 5. The Puzzle in NE I.7 and Two Possible Solutions 37 6. Ackrill 's Inclusivist Solution 40 CHAPTER THREE The Self-Sufficiency of Happiness 47 1. Self-Sufficiency: Three Problems for a Monistic Reading of Eudaimonia 48 2. Self-Sufficiency as a Mark of Finality 51 3. Self-Sufficiency in the Philebus 53 4. The Self-Sufficiency of Monistic Goods 59 5. Choiceworthiness and Self-Sufficiency 63 6. Self-Sufficient Happiness 69 CHAPTER FOUR Acting for the Sake of an Object of Love 72 1. Love and Final Causation in Aristotle's Scientific Works 73 2. How Teleological Approximation Could Solve the Problem of Middle-Level Ends 85 3. Approximation in the Nicomachean Ethics ?88 CHAPTER FIVE Theoretical and Practical Reason 93 1. The Separateness and Similarity of Theoretical and Practical Reason 94 2. Theoretical Sophia versus Practical Wisdom 108 3. The Relationship of Phronesis to Theoretical Wisdom 115 CHAPTER SIX Moral Virtue and To Kalon 123 1. To Kalon Outside Human Action 126 2. To Kalon in Human Action 130 3. The Account of Fine Action at Rhetoric I.9 133 4. To Kalon and Spirited Desire 137 CHAPTER SEVEN Courage, Temperance, and Greatness of Soul 147 1. Courage: NE III.6-9 148 2. Temperance: NE III.1-12 162 3. Greatness of Soul: NE IV.3 168 CHAPTER EIGHT Two Happy Lives and Their Most Final Ends 175 1. The Competition between the Philosophical and Political Lives 177 2. The Superior Finality of Contemplation 181 3. Human Approximation of Divine Life: Part One 188 4. Human Approximation of Divine Life: Part Two 193 5. Choosing Moral Virtue for the Sake of Contemplation 196 APPENDIX Acting for Love in the Symposium 209 1. Possessing the Object of Love 209 2. The Intrinsic Value of Intermediate Objects of Love 216 Works Cited 221 Index Locorum 229 General Index 237

Produktinformationen

Titel: Happy Lives and the Highest Good
Untertitel: An Essay on Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics
Autor:
EAN: 9780691126265
ISBN: 978-0-691-12626-5
Format: Kartonierter Einband
Herausgeber: University Presses
Genre: Philosophie
Anzahl Seiten: 248
Gewicht: g
Größe: H235mm x B152mm
Jahr: 2006