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Individual and Conflict in Greek Ethics$
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Nicholas White

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780198250593

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198250592.001.0001

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Individual Good and Deliberative Conflict in Aristotle

Individual Good and Deliberative Conflict in Aristotle

Chapter:
(p.215) 6 Individual Good and Deliberative Conflict in Aristotle
Source:
Individual and Conflict in Greek Ethics
Author(s):

Nicholas White (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0198250592.003.0006

Although Aristotle's ethics is rightly characterized as eudaimonist, in making the happiness of an individual his preeminent aim, it does not adopt the harmonizing eudaimonist position that all constituents of human happiness are consistent with each other. For one thing, he holds that there can be conflicts between friends. In addition, he maintains that conflicts within happiness can break out, between the value of acting in a morally virtuous way and that of pursuing intellectual virtue or contemplation (theoria). Aristotle thus admits the possibility of conflict within virtue, and therefore within happiness, which is defined as activity in accordance with virtue. He accordingly does not use the notion of virtue, let alone an ethics of virtue, to construct a harmonizing view of happiness.

Keywords:   Aristotle, contemplation, deliberative conflict, eudaimonia, eudaimonism, friendship, happiness, individual good, philia, theoria, virtue

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