David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Utilitas 18 (3):218-231 (2006)
Aristotle's ethical theory is often seen as instructing agents in the prudent pursuit of their own well-being, and therefore labeled egoistic. Yet it is also subject to the opposing charge of failing to direct agents to their well-being, directing them instead to perfection. I am here concerned chiefly with the second criticism, and proceed as follows: I first articulate Sumner's version of the criticism, and second assess his argument for his own (subjective) account of well-being. Third, I present reasons motivating a more objective account of well-being, reasons for taking another look at Aristotle. Finally, granting that Aristotle does indeed direct agents to pursue their perfection, I argue that perfection includes well-being within it. This shows how Aristotle escapes the second criticism, while at the same time pointing the way toward a defense against the first. (Published Online August 21 2006).
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Citations of this work BETA
Anne Baril (2013). The Role of Welfare in Eudaimonism. Southern Journal of Philosophy 51 (4):511-535.
Sami Pihlström (2010). Toward a Pragmatically Naturalist Metaphysics of the Fact-Value Entanglement. Journal of Philosophical Research 35:323-352.
Craig Duncan (2013). Religion and Secular Utility: Happiness, Truth, and Pragmatic Arguments for Theistic Belief. Philosophy Compass 8 (4):381-399.
Christopher Toner (2013). The Dependence of Welfare Upon Virtue. Topoi 32 (2):161-169.
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