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The <i>Endoxon</i> Mystique: What <i>Endoxa</i> Are And What They Are Not

Dorothea Frede

in Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy, Volume 43

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199666164
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191751936 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199666164.003.0007

Series: Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy

The Endoxon Mystique: What Endoxa Are And What They Are Not

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The article contradicts recent tendencies to treat the approach via endoxa as Aristotle’s ubiquitous method of justification in his ethics. It points out that the use in Nicomachean Ethics VII 1-2 is the exception rather than the rule in making use of the dialectic treatment of reputable but not necessarily true premises as recommended in the Topics. Aristotle makes use of that elaborate and unusual method in order to clarify the relation of incontinence and continence and related conditions to virtue and vice proper by sorting out what is right and what is wrong about the prevalent views about these states. That Aristotle makes sparing use of the term ‘endoxon’ is, then, no accident, and hence it is advisable to discriminate carefully between that method and his treatment of well-known phenomena or other generally accepted standards in developing and justifying his own views.

Keywords: Aristotle; endoxa; endoxon; continence; incontinence; Nicomachean Ethics; Topics; ethics

Chapter.  14076 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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