Aristotle on Other-Selfhood and Reciprocal Shaping

History of Philosophy Quarterly 29 (4):319-336 (2012)
This paper concerns the status of Aristotle’s claim that a friend is another self in NE IX.4. Against the prevailing interpretation, I defend the view that Aristotle uses the other-self claim to explain how a virtuous person who values himself will come to value his friend, according to which 1) loving a friend is an extension of self-love, and 2) the conception of the friend as another self explains how the friend’s eudaimonia becomes constitutive of the agent’s eudaimonia. I argue that this view, properly construed, is defensible from two objections: that it is narcissistic, and that it is incompatible with Aristotle’s insistence that we value our friends for their sakes. According to Aristotle, virtuous friends become other selves to one another by engaging in a process I call “reciprocal shaping,” a process by which friends develop a shared character. If virtuous friends value one another on account of character as Aristotle claims, then they value one another on account their shared character.
Keywords Aristotle  Ancient Philosophy  Ethics  Friendship
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 30,133
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
The Advantages of Civic Friendship.Joyce L. Jenkins - 1999 - Journal of Philosophical Research 24:459-471.
Aristotle on Self-Knowledge and Friendship.Zena Hitz - 2011 - Philosophers' Imprint 11:1-28.
Eudaimonia, External Results, and Choosing Virtuous Actions for Themselves.Jennifer Whiting - 2002 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 65 (2):270-290.
Could an Egoist Be a Friend?Joe Mintoff - 2006 - American Philosophical Quarterly 43 (2):101 - 118.
Aristotle on Making Other Selves.Elijah Millgram - 1987 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 17 (2):361 - 376.
Civic Friendship and Thin Citizenship.R. K. Bentley - 2013 - Res Publica 19 (1):5-19.
The Self in Aristotle's Ethics.Stephen A. Calogero - 1998 - Philosophy in the Contemporary World 5 (2/3):85-95.
Aristotle.J. M. E. Moravcsik - 1967 - Garden City, N.Y., Anchor Books.
Why We Love the Land.Paul Schollmeier - 1997 - Ethics and the Environment 2 (1):53 - 65.
Confucius and Aristotle on the Goods of Friendship.Eric Mullis - 2010 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 9 (4):391-405.
Added to PP index

Total downloads

Recent downloads (6 months)

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.
My notes
Sign in to use this feature