CAHSS Faculty Articles

Title

Aristotle on Practical Wisdom: Nicomachean Ethics VI

Department

Department of History and Political Science

Publication Date

12-31-2013

Publication Title

Metapsychology Online Reviews

ISSN

1931-5716

Volume

17

Issue/No.

52

Abstract

Excerpt

I like to tell students in my undergraduate ancient philosophy class that Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics is a sort of self-help book. I think this is a fair description given that the major thrust of Aristotle’s ancient text is to help its readers understand what happiness means and just what is required in order to obtain it in our lifetimes. On the other hand, my description is a bit of a stretch in the sense that the Nicomachean Ethics is a notoriously densely argued and poorly edited text. It just doesn’t seem suitable for the audience that most self-help books are meant to reach. Reeve’s Aristotle on Practical Wisdom can help some make better sense of Aristotle’s work.

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