Aristotle's Ethics

Aristotle's Ethics: Writings from the Complete Works

Copyright Date: 2014
Edition: STU - Student edition
Pages: 528
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  • Book Info
    Aristotle's Ethics
    Book Description:

    Aristotle's moral philosophy is a pillar of Western ethical thought. It bequeathed to the world an emphasis on virtues and vices, happiness as well-being or a life well lived, and rationally motivated action as a mean between extremes. Its influence was felt well beyond antiquity into the Middle Ages, particularly through the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas. In the past century, with the rise of virtue theory in moral philosophy, Aristotle's ethics has been revived as a source of insight and interest. While most attention has traditionally focused on Aristotle's famousNicomachean Ethics, there are several other works written by or attributed to Aristotle that illuminate his ethics: theEudemian Ethics, theMagna Moralia, andVirtues and Vices.

    This book brings together all four of these important texts, in thoroughly revised versions of the translations found in the authoritative complete works universally recognized as the standard English edition. Edited and introduced by two of the world's leading scholars of ancient philosophy, this is an essential volume for anyone interested in the ethical thought of one of the most important philosophers in the Western tradition.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-5236-9
    Subjects: Philosophy

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. [i]-[iv])
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. [v]-[viii])
    (pp. 1-22)

    Aristotle was born in 384 in the small township of Stagira, in north- eastern Greece. His father, Nicomachus, was a physician attached to the Macedonian court. At the age of seventeen he moved south to Athens, and joined the Academy, that brilliant band of philosophers, scientists, mathematicians, and politicians which gathered in Athens under Plato’s leadership. For twenty years he remained as Plato’s pupil and colleague, and made a name for himself as an industrious student, a vigorous polemicist, and an independent thinker, with an early interest in rhetoric, logic, metaphysics, and ethics.

    In 359 King Philip II succeeded to...

    (pp. 23-206)

    The man who stated his opinion in the god’s precinct in Delos made an inscription on the propylaeum to the temple of Leto, in which he separated from one another the good, the noble and the pleasant as not all properties of the same thing. He wrote:

    Most noble is what is most just, but best is health,

    and pleasantest the getting what one longs for.

    Let us disagree with him; for happiness is at once the most noble and best of all things and also the pleasantest.

    About each thing and kind there are many considerations that raise problems...

    (pp. 207-372)

    Every craft and every inquiry, and similarly actions and choices, are thought to aim at some good; that is why the good has rightly been declared to be that at which all things aim. But a certain difference is found among ends: some are activities, others are products apart from the activities that produce them. Where there are ends apart from the actions, it is the nature of the products to be better than the activities. Now, as there are many actions, crafts, and sciences, their ends also are many: the end of medicine is health, that of shipbuilding a...

    (pp. 373-474)

    Since our purpose is to speak about moral matters, we must first inquire of what moral character is a part. To speak concisely, then, it would seem to be a part of nothing else than the art of politics. For it is not possible to act at all in political affairs unless one is of a certain kind—I mean, virtuous. Now to be virtuous is to possess the virtues. If therefore one is to act in political affairs, one must have a virtuous character. The study of character then is, as it seems, a part and an origin or...

    (pp. 475-484)

    What is noble is praiseworthy, what is ignoble blameworthy. At the head of what is noble stand the virtues, at the head of what is ignoble the vices.¹ Praiseworthy too are what cause the virtues and what accompany them and what they produce. The contraries are blameworthy.

    If in agreement with Plato we take the soul to have three parts, then wisdom is the virtue of the calculative part, good temper and courage of the passionate part, temperance and continence of the appetitive part; and of the soul as a whole, justice, liberality, and pride. Folly is the vice of...

    (pp. 485-494)
    (pp. 495-498)
    (pp. 499-514)