Chapter

Introduction

J. C. B. Gosling and C. C. W. Taylor

in The Greeks On Pleasure

Published in print December 1982 | ISBN: 9780198246664
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191681035 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198246664.003.0001
Introduction

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This chapter sets out the purpose of the book, which is to examine the development of philosophical views on the nature of pleasure and the importance it does or should have in human life during the classical Greek period. It argues that throughout the period it is notable that, among those philosophers who have survived, flirtation with hedonism, or more, seems to have been the fashion. Most attacks on hedonism are directed at advocates of bodily pleasure. It is not until the time of the later Plato and of Aristotle that we start getting evidence of views of pleasure as something bad in itself. Also running through the period is a tendency to relate views on pleasure, its nature as well as its value, to views about the human and/or animal organism. This leads to interesting obscurities as to whether pleasure or good states are playing the role of determinant of value.

Keywords: ancient Greeks; pleasure; hedonism; Plato; Eudoxus; Aristotle

Chapter.  2513 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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