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Happiness for Humans$
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Daniel C. Russell

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199583683

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199583683.001.0001

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Happiness and Virtuous Activity

Happiness and Virtuous Activity

(p.65) 3 Happiness and Virtuous Activity
Happiness for Humans

Daniel C. Russell

Oxford University Press

This chapter moves from the concept of happiness to a particular conception of it, beginning with the very idea that virtuous activity could have anything to do with happiness. Instead of beginning with a fixed notion of virtuous activity and arguing that it is important for happiness, this chapter argues that eudaimonia affords a good place to begin in thinking about what counts as an excellence or virtue in a human being in the first place. The chapter focuses on the formal constraints on conceptions of happiness that Aristotle proposed, and argues that a life of virtuous activity meets those constraints.

Keywords:   Aristotle, completeness, emotional soundness, finality, formal constraints on happiness, fulfillment, human nature, Nicomachean Ethics, self-sufficiency, virtue theory, virtuous activity

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