Aγαθόν and Eὐδαιμονία In the Ethics of Aristotle<sup>1</sup>

J. L. Austin, J. O. Urmson and G. J. Warnock

in Philosophical Papers

Third edition

Published in print March 1979 | ISBN: 9780192830210
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597039 | DOI:

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

Aγαθόν and Eὐδαιμονία In the Ethics of Aristotle1

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Agathon and Eudaimonia in the Ethics of Aristotle’ is a response to an article on the meaning of Agathon in the Ethics of Aristotle, published by H. A. Pritchard in 1935. In this paper, Pritchard argued that Aristotle regarded Agathon to mean ‘conducive to our happiness’ and, consequently, that he maintained that every deliberate action stems, ultimately, from the desire to become happy. Austin finds fault with this view: first, Agathon in Aristotle does not have a single meaning, and a fortiori not the one Pritchard suggested; secondly, if one had to summarise the meaning of ‘being agathon’ in one phrase, then ‘being desired’ cannot fulfil this function, for there are other objects of desire besides τό άγαθόν (the good).

Keywords: action; Agathon; Aristotle; Austin; desire; ethics; Eudaimonia; happiness; Pritchard

Chapter.  11720 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Language

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