Aristotle, a student of Plato, wrote Nicomachean Ethics in 350 BCE, in a time of extraordinary intellectual development. Over two millennia later, his thorough exploration of virtue, reason, and the ultimate human good still forms the basis of the values at the heart of Western civilization. According to Aristotle, the ultimate human good is eudaimonia, or happiness, which comes from a life of virtuous action. He argues that virtues like justice, restraint, and practical wisdom cannot simply be taught but must be developed over time by cultivating virtuous habits, which can be developed by using practical wisdom and recognizing the desirable middle ground between extremes of human behavior.
Table of Contents
Ways in to the Text
Who was Aristotle?
What does Nichomachean Ethics Say?
Why does Nichomachean Ethics Matter?
Section 1: Influences
Module 1: The Author and the Historical Context
Module 2: Academic Context
Module 3: The Problem
Module 4: The Author's Contribution
Section 2: Ideas
Module 5: Main Ideas
Module 6: Secondary Ideas
Module 7: Achievement
Module 8: Place in the Author's Work
Section 3: Impact
Module 9: The First Responses
Module 10: The Evolving Debate
Module 11: Impact and Influence Today
Module 12: Where Next?
Glossary of Terms
People Mentioned in the Text
Dr Giovanni Gellera holds a doctorate from the University of Glasgow on the reception of Aristotle in seventeenth-century Scotland. He curently a postdoctoral researcher in erly modern philosophy and science at the University of Glasgow.