Monday, 14 March 2011

17th March - Aristotle


Please read Book Two of the Aristotle, and read the Louden. You dont need to read the Nussbaum.


1. In chaphter one he says moral good is the child of what? Why?
2. In chaphter two (esp pg 148) he first offers the doctrine of the mean. What is the arugment here? What do you think of it?
3. In chaphter 4 he defends himself against a circularity charge. What is the arugment put against Aristotle here? How does he think he can avoid it? Can you see the realtion between this arugment and some found in the Louden?
4. In chaphter 7 he talks more about the doctrine of the mean. What are his examples? Can you think of any counterexamples?

1. According to Louden (pg 227), how would a utilitarian define virtue? How about a denontological theorist?
2. What notion does Anscombe say we can do without in ethics? What do yoiu think of this claim? Does it make sense?
3. "The concept of the moral ought... seems now to be explicated in terms of what the good person would do". Read the arugment surronding this passage (pg 228). Should ought be defined in terms of virtues or virtues in terms of ought?
4. At the top of page 229, what does L claim is the central question for viertue ethics? Why is this supposed to be a problem for virtue ethics?
5. What is the 'tragic humans' objection? Do we punish otherwise good people who make mistakes? Why? Should we?
6. What is the charachter change objection? Can you think of any counterarugments? (Can a person change so much in their morals that they become a completely serprate person to who they were before? Would this line help the virtue ethicist?)
7. Wht claim it is sometimes "acts rather than agents which ought to be the primary focus of moral evaluation"? Is this right?
8. Look at the arugment in the middle of the first coloum on og 232. What is the externalist claim? Do our actions define us?
9. What is the 'direct internalist route' on pg 232? Why (according to L) wont it work? If niether the externalist or internalist route works, what does this mean for virtue ethics?
10. Why does L claim that virtue ethics is concerned with "style over substance'? What does he mean? Is it what you do or how you do it that matters?
11. At the bottom of page 11 he claims "things have gotten more complex". What rests on this claim? Do you agree?

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