HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle
Loading...

Nicomachean Ethics

by Aristotle

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5,88925710 (3.83)55
  1. 215
    Ayn Rand's Normative Ethics: The Virtuous Egoist by Tara Smith (mcaution)
    mcaution: Virtue ethics gets its best defense and fullest exposition.
  2. 217
    The Virtue of Selfishness by Ayn Rand (mcaution)
    mcaution: A new morality grounded completely in reason, based upon the facts of reality. Presents "selfishness" in proper context and does away with its common false dichotomy.
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 55 mentions

English (23)  French (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (25)
Showing 1-5 of 23 (next | show all)
One of the most accessible works of Aristotle or ancient philosophy in general, but also one of the most practical, because its subject is ethics, or how to live one's life. ( )
1 vote Audacity88 | Feb 7, 2014 |
Plato and Aristotle between them not only laid the foundations for Western philosophy, many would argue they divided it neatly between them: Plato the one who with his "Allegory of the Cave" gave birth to the idea of an existence beyond our senses, giving a rational gloss to mysticism. Aristotle, the father of logic and a scientist, with a this-world orientation. There's a famous fresco by Raphael, "The School of Athens," where that's illustrated, where the figure meant to be Plato points to the sky--the heavens--while Aristotle points to the ground--to this Earth. If you're going to ask me which school I belong to--at least as so categorized, Aristotle wins, hands down. Yet if you ask me which philosopher I found a joy to read, which a slog--well, Plato wins.

Unfortunately, much of Aristotle's works were lost, and what remains I've seen described as not his polished material, but "lecture notes." Plato's dialogues are like little plays, and reading them often are, I daresay, fun. Yes, really. So it was disappointing not to find Aristotle as lively a read. This is dry stuff. But then there are the ideas, which fully earn the five stars. Back when I was introduced to ethics in school, about the only two choices we were given was Utilitarianism--the "greatest good for the greatest number" or Kant and his "categorical imperative" with examples contrasting them such as, under Utilitarianism, if torture leads to good for the greatest number, then by all means, let the water boarding begin! Under the categorical imperative, on the other hand, rules... well, rule. It doesn't matter if there's a ticking atomic bomb, you don't use torture. You're not supposed to care about practical consequences, to yourself or others. What's left out of both philosophies is the individual and his or her happiness. But that's not left out with Aristotle. For him ethics is practical and about the pursuit of happiness. It's for that and from that virtues flow. It's in our personal interest to be virtuous, to practice habits of character that lead to a good life for a human being. Those ethics that appeal and resonate to me come from this school of thought. It's philosophy for human beings, on a human level. So, Plato for style--Aristotle for substance. For me, anyway. ( )
1 vote LisaMaria_C | May 25, 2013 |
Aristotle vs. Plato

Having just finished and enjoyed Plato's complete works, I find this book a bit annoying and uninspiring in comparison. Aristotle seems to take every opportunity to "correct" Plato, when in fact he is only attacking a strawman. His arguments, sometimes self-contradictory, often support and clarify Plato's ideas, albeit using his own terminology.

Aristotle seems to have great difficulty appreciating or understanding Plato’s abstractions (from species to genus, from the individual instances to the common patterns, i.e. Idea or Form). This is the cause of the majority of his attacks against Plato, as “piety requires us to honour truth above our friends.” How very noble of him!

I don't know whether the Academy and Aristotle's Lyceum charged their students fees. If not, there were no financial incentives in disparaging their rival. If it was purely intellectual rivalry, using straw man is often a sign of an inferior intellect or character. Since both Plato and Aristotle believed that the intellect was the best part of man or the true man, to attack and destroy another's ideas would be equivalent to murder (or Freudian parricide).

However, it could also be true that Aristotle was formulating his own philosophy through engagement with Plato's ideas, and intellectual competitions and debates help facilitate the development of sound ideas. Since this is the first book by Aristotle that I've read, it's very likely that I'm not giving him his due here. It may take some time to switch from Plato to Aristotle's way of thinking.

A Champion of Mediocrity

Aristotle's definitions of good, virtue and happiness are unsatisfactory to me. Good is "that at which all things aim". All people aim at happiness (or pleasure), therefore happiness is the supreme good. But, what exactly is happiness or pleasure? How can one hit his aim if he can't discern what he is aiming at? If virtue is "the mean between deficiency and excess", what is the difference between virtue and mediocrity?

"Pleasure perfects activity not as the formed state that issues in that activity perfects it, by being immanent in it, but as a sort of supervening [culminating] perfection, like the bloom that graces the flower of youth." How can a fleeting thing that lacks permanence be the object of a lifelong pursuit?

In the end, Aristotle agrees with Plato, perhaps begrudgingly as it was dictated by reason, that happiness is contemplation of the divine, which is pleasant, self-sufficient and continuous. He insists on making a distinction between activity and state, but in this instance the distinction is unclear to me.

An Acute Observer of Human Nature

There are a few things I do appreciate in this book. Aristotle's joie de vivre (his delight in learning, being alive and active), his insights into human nature, his clear and penetrating psychological portrayal of various character traits and the dynamic relationships or transactions between human beings. He also introduced me to Pythagorean's fascinating mathematical representation of equality, A:B = B:C and A-M = M -C. ( )
2 vote booksontrial | Jan 4, 2013 |
De Ethica Nicomachea is een van de meest toegankelijke teksten van Aristoteles. Het is ook een belangrijk werk, want het is de eerste systematische uiteenzetting over ethiek in de westerse wijsbegeerte. Bovendien staat het werk aan de oorsprong van een bepaalde wijsgerige reflectie, de zogenaamde 'geluksethiek'. Het werk heeft een diepgaande en blijvende invloed uitgeoefend. Het heeft gangbare opvattingen over ethiek helpen vormen. Wie de Ethica ter hand neemt, zal vertrouwde begrippen en problemen ontmoeten.

De Ethica is geschreven voor de volwassen politieke burger met levenservaring, die goede vorming behoeft om juiste wetten voor de gemeenschap te ontwerpen. Om goede wetten te maken dient men de structuur van de ziel te kennen, te weten hoe men een voortreffelijk karakter verwerft, en inzicht te hebben in de verschillende types van rechtvaardigheid. Met deze vaardigheden is de politicus in staat wetten te maken die het geluk van de burgers kunnen bevorderen. De Ethica is hierom te beschouwen als een handleiding voor toekomstige wetgevers en politici.

Het geluk vormt het hoofdthema van de aristotelische ethiek. Het geluk bestaat niet uit één element, maar bevat een veelheid aan wenselijke onderdelen. In de Ethica onderzoekt Aristoteles de vraag wat geluk nu precies kan zijn, en bouwt zijn uiteenzetting op rond de drie typen van gelukkig leven: het geluk van de genotsmens, van de burger en van de filosoof. De vorming van goede eigenschappen, zowel die van het karakter als die van het verstand, ligt aan de basis van Aristoteles' deugdenethiek. De ethiek van Aristoteles blijft stevig verankerd in de praktijk van het leven in de gemeenschap. De Ethica is te beschouwen als een onderzoek naar het menselijk geluk en naar de middelen om dit geluk te realiseren.

De Ethica is het eerste deel in de grote serie Aristoteles in Nederlandse vertaling.
Recensie(s)
NBD|Biblion recensie
In het kader van de sterk gegroeide belangstelling bij een breed publiek voor de antieke filosofie past de Aristoteles-reeks van de Historische Uitgeverij Groningen uitstekend. Door een deskundige redactie wordt een hele serie tractaten van de grote Griekse denker (vierde eeuw v. Chr.) in een moderne Nederlandse vertaling voorbereid. Het eerste deel is nu verschenen: het bevat de 'Ethica', (ook wel 'Ethica Nicomachea' geheten), een van Aristoteles' invloedrijkste werken, met een problematiek van normen en waarden, die hoogst actueel is. De vertaling van de Vlaamse classici-filosofen is goed leesbaar - dit lijkt een minimale kwaliteit, maar te bedenken valt dat het Grieks ronduit stroef is! Een heldere inleiding en een ruime voorraad noten maken het werk toegankelijk. Er is een handig namenregister toegevoegd. De bibliografie, die beknopt is gehouden, had wellicht een wat internationaler karakter kunnen hebben. Verzorgde uitgave met leeslint.
(Biblion recensie, Dr. R.Th. van der Paardt.)
  BibliaSpiritualia | Dec 23, 2012 |
Aristotle is alright; I have no complaints.

(8/10) ( )
  Tullius22 | Nov 23, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 23 (next | show all)
The volume before us is much more than a translation. The translators, Robert C. Bartlett, who teaches Hellenic politics at Boston College, and Susan D. Collins, a political scientist at the University of Houston, have provided helpful aids. ... Together these bring the original text within the compass of every intelligent reader.
 

» Add other authors (134 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Aristotleprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Peters, F. H.Translatormain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ross, DavidTranslatormain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Broadie, SarahEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brown, LesleyEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brown, LesleyEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bywater, IngramEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ostwald, MartinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rowe, C. J.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Every art or applied science and every systematic investigation, and similarly every action and choice, seem to aim at some good; the good, therefore, has been well declared as that at which all things aim.
Every art and every inquiry, and similarly every action as well as choice, is held to aim at some good.
Every art and every kind of inquiry, and likewise every act and purpose, seems to aim at some good: and so it has been well said that the good is that at which everything aims.
Every art and every inquiry, and similarly every action and pursuit, is thought to aim at some good;  and for this reason the good has rightly been declared to be that at which all things aim.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language
Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0872204642, Paperback)

Building on the strengths of the first edition, the second edition of the Irwin Nicomachean Ethics features a revised translation (without extensive editorial intervention), expanded notes (including a summary of the argument of each chapter), an expanded Introduction, and a revised glossary.

Terence Irwin is Susan Linn Sage Professor of Philosophy, Cornell University.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:36:20 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

"Happiness, then, is the best, noblest, and most pleasant thing in the world.' In the Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle's guiding question is: what is the best thing for a human being? His answer is happiness, but he means, not something we feel, but rather a specially good kind of life. Happiness is made up of activities in which we use the best human capacities, both ones that contribute to our flourishing as members of a community, and ones that allow us to engage in god-like contemplation. Contemporary ethical writings on the role and importance ofthe moral virtues such as courage and justice have drawn inspiration from this work, which also contains important discussions on responsibility for actions, on the nature of practical reasoning, and on friendship and its role in the best life. This new edition retains and lightly revises David Ross's justly admired translation. It also includes a valuable introduction to this seminal work, and notes designed to elucidate Aristotle's arguments"--Provided by publisher.… (more)

» see all 5 descriptions

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.83)
0.5
1 7
1.5 3
2 28
2.5 8
3 116
3.5 17
4 171
4.5 24
5 126

Audible.com

4 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 94,393,744 books! | Top bar: Always visible