Aristotle on <i>Eudaimonia</i>

A. W. Price

in Virtue and Reason in Plato and Aristotle

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199609611
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731846 | DOI:
Aristotle on Eudaimonia

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Eudaimonia as the final goal of action is abstract, being equivalent to ‘acting well’. We should not view it as the totality of the goods that a life contains, which leads to insoluble problems. A life can contain incidental goods that are good in themselves, and marginally enhance a day, but are not aspects of action; these do not contribute to eudaimonia. Aristotle demands a modicum of external goods for eudaimonia, a context of action that is not simply unwelcome, and a ‘complete life’ that may be less than a lifetime. His privileging of the life of intellectual contemplation is problematic, but does not entail that one should sacrifice everything (and everyone) else to doing more mathematics.

Keywords: eudaimonia; living well; acting well; whole; parts; final end; complete life; external goods; contemplation

Chapter.  25085 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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