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Book description

Aristotle's discussion of the motivation of the good person is both complicated and cryptic. Depending on which passages are emphasized, he may seem to be presenting a Kantian style view according to which the good person is and ought to be motivated primarily by reason, or a Humean style view according to which desires and feelings are or ought to be in charge. In this book, Paula Gottlieb argues that Aristotle sees the thought, desires and feelings of the good person as interdependent in a way that is sui generis, and she explains how Aristotle's concept of choice (prohairesis) is an innovative and pivotal element in his account. Gottlieb's interpretation casts light on Aristotle's account of moral education, on the psychology of good, bad and half-bad (akratic) people, and on the aesthetic and even musical side to being a good person.


'Paula Gottlieb's examination of the inter-penetration of thought and feeling in Aristotle's conception of a virtuous person is essential reading both for specialists and for anyone interested in virtue ethics. Her opposition to interpretations that liken Aristotle to Hume or Kant is thorough, judicious, and convincing.'

Richard Kraut - Northwestern University

'This book is an excellent, eminently readable, and scholarly choice for the reader seeking both a well-argued general description of Aristotle's Ethics and an examination of its many puzzling details. Includes excellent bibliographical references. Highly Recommended.'

P. A. Streveler Source: Choice

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