Aristotle and the Origins of Evil

Phronesis: A Journal for Ancient Philosophy 65 (2):179-223 (2020)
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Abstract

The paper addresses the following question: why do human beings, on Aristotle’s view, have an innate tendency to badness, that is, to developing desires that go beyond, and often against, their natural needs? Given Aristotle’s teleological assumptions (including the thesis that nature does nothing in vain), such tendency should not be present. I argue that the culprit is to be found in the workings of rationality. In particular, it is the presence of theoretical reason that necessitates the limitless nature of human non-rational desires.

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Jozef Müller
University of California, Riverside

References found in this work

Origins of Objectivity.Tyler Burge - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
An Introduction to Plato's Republic.Julia Annas - 1981 - Oxford University Press.
The Fragility of Goodness.Martha Nussbaum - 1986 - Journal of Philosophy 85 (7):376-383.
Desiring the Bad: An Essay in Moral Psychology.Michael Stocker - 1979 - Journal of Philosophy 76 (12):738-753.

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