Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Aristotle's Dialogue with SocratesOn the "Nicomachean Ethics"$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Ronna Burger

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780226080505

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226080543.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 20 September 2021

Pleasure and the Discovery of Nature

Pleasure and the Discovery of Nature

(p.131) 5 Pleasure and the Discovery of Nature
Aristotle's Dialogue with Socrates
University of Chicago Press

The reconsideration of human character in Book VII of Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics takes the form of an exploration of the psychology of desire, and the perspective of the inquiry exhibits the effects of the path it has followed to reach this point. Having been freed, apparently, from seeing things through the lens of morality, the argument turns to the natural attraction to pleasure and repulsion from pain that is evident throughout animal life, including human life. While departing from the presuppositions of virtue and vice, the inquiry in Book VII brings to light a range of human character that extends beyond those alternatives. The inquiry of Book VII opens a window through which we glimpse the repellent bestiality of which human beings are capable. Aristotle set the stage in Book II for his debate with Socrates when he interpreted the Socratic turn to logoi as a misunderstanding of ethical virtue. Aristotle's final confrontation with Socrates compels him to wrestle with all the puzzles involved in explaining the power of pleasure to lead us astray.

Keywords:   Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, virtue, vice, pleasure, nature, bestiality, Socrates, logoi

Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.