Chapter

Virtues and Vices

Philippa Foot

in Virtues and Vices

Published in print October 2002 | ISBN: 9780199252862
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597435 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199252866.003.0001
Virtues and Vices

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Virtues and vices, often neglected in analytic philosophy, are discussed here, drawing on the works of Aristotle, St. Thomas Aquinas, and Immanuel Kant. Virtues are first described as beneficial characteristics that consist in goodness of the will, but a discussion of the virtue of wisdom shows a virtue may also require knowledge. Virtues are seen as correctives of harmful human passions and other general temptations, but this does not mean that a particular act of virtue must always be difficult to perform. Lastly, it is argued that a virtue does not operate as a virtue when turned to a bad end, as for instance when someone needs daring to commit a murder.

Keywords: St. Thomas Aquinas; Aristotle; courage; Immanuel Kant; vices; virtues; wisdom

Chapter.  7610 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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