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By Howard J. Curzer

Aristotle is the daddy of advantage ethics--a self-discipline that's receiving renewed scholarly realization. but Aristotle's debts of the person virtues stay opaque, for many modern commentators of Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics have concentrated upon different issues. by contrast, Howard J. Curzer takes Aristotle's unique description of the person virtues to be principal to his moral conception. operating in the course of the Nicomachean Ethics virtue-by-virtue, explaining and customarily protecting Aristotle's claims, this publication brings each one of Aristotle's virtues alive. a brand new Aristotle emerges, an Aristotle fascinated with the main points of the person virtues.

Justice and friendship carry specified locations in Aristotle's advantage thought. Many modern discussions position justice and friendship at contrary, even perhaps conflicting, poles of a spectrum. Justice appears greatly a public, neutral, and dispassionate factor, whereas friendship is paradigmatically deepest, partial, and passionate. but Curzer argues that during Aristotle's view they're truly symbiotic. Justice is outlined by way of friendship, and stable friendship is outlined when it comes to justice.

Curzer is going directly to show how advantage ethics is not just approximately being sturdy; it's also approximately changing into reliable. Aristotle and the Virtues reconstructs Aristotle's account of ethical improvement. convinced personality kinds function phases of ethical improvement. sure catalysts and mechanisms lead from one level to the subsequent. Explaining why a few humans can't make ethical growth specifies the preconditions of ethical improvement. ultimately, Curzer describes Aristotle's quest to figure out the last word objective of ethical improvement, happiness.

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Surprisingly (or perhaps not), sensual pain and pleasure are not far apart. Leave it a bit too long on the warmer and good coffee turns bitter; push a little too hard and a good back rub becomes painful; and so on. Courage and temperance are complementary in another way, too. Many courageous acts have external goals, but sometimes (when repelling an attacker, for example) a person may act courageously just to avoid a counter-goal. Similarly, many temperate acts have the external goal of sensual pleasure, but sometimes (when repelling a seducer, for example) a person may act temperately just to avoid a counter-goal.

E. death, injury, and physical pain). Aristotle next identifies a class of situations that clearly exhibit courage (and its associated vices) namely life-threatening, battlefield situations. Finally, Aristotle limits the sphere of courage to situations where confidence as well as fear of physical harm is appropriate. In tracing this process I have made four general claims about Aristotle’s theory of virtues. First, the objects of the virtues are objective. Virtues are expressed in action and passion with respect to what virtuous people take the objects to be.

And passage [B] suggests that many other virtues involve fear. 22 Typically, however, these harms are not pointless. The dying, injured, or suffering person has a goal of inspiring others or proving a point, and hopes to achieve that goal by facing suffering with fortitude. These acts are not counterexamples to Aristotle’s view. We also applaud people who face inevitable, pointless death, injuries, or physical pain with fortitude, people who suffer these harms calmly, even though nothing is to be gained.

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