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Virtue ethics

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Virtue ethics (also aretaic ethics,[a][1] from Greek ἀρετή [aretḗ]) is an approach that treats virtue and character as the primary subjects of ethics, in contrast to other ethical systems that put consequences of voluntary acts, principles or rules of conduct, or obedience to divine authority in the primary role.[2]

Virtue ethics is usually contrasted with two other major approaches in ethics, consequentialism and deontology, which make the goodness of outcomes of an action (consequentialism) and the concept of moral duty (deontology) central. While virtue ethics does not necessarily deny the importance to ethics of goodness of states of affairs or of moral duties, it emphasizes virtue, and sometimes other concepts, like eudaimonia, to an extent that other ethics theories do not.

Key concepts


Virtue and vice


In virtue ethics, a virtue is a characteristic disposition to think, feel, and act well in some domain of life.[3] In contrast, a vice is a characteristic disposition to think, feel, and act poorly. Virtues are not everyday habits; they are character traits, in the sense that they are central to someone’s personality and what they are like as a person.

In early versions and some modern versions of virtue ethics, a virtue is defined as a character trait that promotes or exhibits human excellence ("flourishing and wellbeing", eudaimonia) in the person who exhibits it.[4] Some modern versions of virtue ethics do not define virtues in terms of human excellence or flourishing, and some go so far as to define virtues as traits that tend to promote some other good that is defined independently of the virtues, thereby subsuming virtue ethics under (or somehow merging it with) consequentialist ethics.[5]

To Aristotle, a virtue was not a skill that made you better able to achieve eudaimonia but was itself an expression of eudaimoniaeudaimonia in activity.[6]

In contrast with consequentialist and deontological ethical systems, in which one may be called upon to do the right thing even though it is not in one's own interests (one is to do it instead for the greater good, or out of duty), in virtue ethics, one does the right thing because it is in one's own interests. Part of training in practical virtue ethics is to come to see the coincidence of one's enlightened self-interest and the practice of the virtues, so that one is virtuous willingly, gladly, and enthusiastically because one knows that being virtuous is the best thing one can do with oneself.[7]: I 

Virtue and emotion


In ancient Greek and modern eudaimonic virtue ethics, virtues and vices are complex dispositions that involve both affective and intellectual components.[8] That is, they are dispositions that involve both being able to reason well about the right thing to do (see below on phronesis), and also to engage emotions and feelings correctly.

For example, a generous person can reason well about when and how to help people, and such a person also helps people with pleasure and without conflict. In this, virtuous people are contrasted not only with vicious people (who reason poorly about what to do and are emotionally attached to the wrong things) and with the incontinent (who are tempted by their feelings into doing the wrong thing even though they know what is right), but also with the merely continent (whose emotions tempt them toward doing the wrong thing but whose strength of will lets them do what they know is right).

According to Rosalind Hursthouse, in Aristotelian virtue ethics, the emotions have moral significance because "virtues (and vices) are all dispositions not only to act, but to feel emotions, as reactions as well as impulses to action... [and] In the person with the virtues, these emotions will be felt on the right occasions, toward the right people or objects, for the right reasons, where 'right' means 'correct'..."[9]

Phronesis and eudaimonia


Phronesis (φρόνησις; prudence, practical virtue, or practical wisdom) is an acquired trait that enables its possessor to identify the best thing to do in any given situation.[10] Unlike theoretical wisdom, practical reason results in action or decision.[11] As John McDowell puts it, practical wisdom involves a "perceptual sensitivity" to what a situation requires.[12]

Eudaimonia (εὐδαιμονία) is a state variously translated from Greek as 'well-being', 'happiness', 'blessedness', and in the context of virtue ethics, 'human flourishing'.[13] Eudaimonia in this sense is not a subjective, but an objective, state.[citation needed] It characterizes the well-lived life.

According to Aristotle, the most prominent exponent of eudaimonia in the Western philosophical tradition, eudaimonia defines the goal of human life. It consists of exercising the characteristic human quality—reason—as the soul's most proper and nourishing activity. In his Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle, like Plato before him, argued that the pursuit of eudaimonia is an "activity of the soul in accordance with perfect virtue",[7]: I  which further could only properly be exercised in the characteristic human community—the polis or city-state.[14]

Although eudaimonia was first popularized by Aristotle, it now belongs to the tradition of virtue theories generally.[15] For the virtue theorist, eudaimonia describes that state achieved by the person who lives the proper human life, an outcome that can be reached by practicing the virtues. A virtue is a habit or quality that allows the bearer to succeed at his, her, or its purpose. The virtue of a knife, for example, is sharpness; among the virtues of a racehorse is speed. Thus, to identify the virtues for human beings, one must have an account of what is the human purpose.

Not all modern virtue ethics theories are eudaimonic; some place another end in place of eudaimonia, while others are non-teleological: that is, they do not account for virtues in terms of the results that the practice of the virtues produce or tend to produce.[16]

History of virtue


Like much of the Western tradition, virtue theory originated in ancient Greek philosophy.

Virtue ethics began with Socrates, and was subsequently developed further by Plato, Aristotle, and the Stoics.[17] Virtue ethics concentrates on the character of the individual, rather than the acts (or consequences thereof) of the individual. There is debate among adherents of virtue ethics concerning what specific virtues are praiseworthy. However, most theorists agree that ethics is demonstrated by the practice of virtues.

Plato and Aristotle's treatments of virtues are not the same. Plato believes virtue is effectively an end to be sought, for which a friend might be a useful means. Aristotle states that the virtues function more as means to safeguard human relations, particularly authentic friendship, without which one's quest for happiness is frustrated.

Discussion of what were known as the four cardinal virtueswisdom, justice, fortitude, and temperance—can be found in Plato's Republic. The virtues also figure prominently in Aristotle's ethical theory found in Nicomachean Ethics.[7]

Virtue theory was inserted into the study of history by moralistic historians such as Livy, Plutarch, and Tacitus. The Greek idea of the virtues was passed on in Roman philosophy through Cicero and later incorporated into Christian moral theology by Ambrose of Milan. During the scholastic period, the most comprehensive consideration of the virtues from a theological perspective was provided by Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologiae and his Commentaries on the Nicomachean Ethics.[18]

After the Reformation, Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics continued to be the main authority for the discipline of ethics at Protestant universities until the late seventeenth century, with over fifty Protestant commentaries published on the Nicomachean Ethics before 1682.[19]

Though the tradition receded into the background of European philosophical thought in the past few centuries, the term "virtue" remained current during this period, and in fact appears prominently in the tradition of classical republicanism or classical liberalism. This tradition was prominent in the intellectual life of 16th-century Italy, as well as 17th- and 18th-century Britain and America; indeed the term "virtue" appears frequently in the work of Tomás Fernández de Medrano, Niccolò Machiavelli, David Hume, the republicans of the English Civil War period, the 18th-century English Whigs, and the prominent figures among the Scottish Enlightenment and the American Founding Fathers.

Contemporary "aretaic turn"


Although some Enlightenment philosophers (e.g. Hume) continued to emphasise the virtues, with the ascendancy of utilitarianism and deontological ethics, virtue theory moved to the margins of Western philosophy. The contemporary revival of virtue theory is frequently traced to the philosopher Elizabeth Anscombe's 1958 essay "Modern Moral Philosophy".[20] Following this:

The aretaic turn in moral philosophy is paralleled by analogous developments in other philosophical disciplines. One of these is epistemology, where a distinctive virtue epistemology was developed by Linda Zagzebski and others. In political theory, there has been discussion of "virtue politics", and in legal theory, there is a small but growing body of literature on virtue jurisprudence. The aretaic turn also exists in American constitutional theory, where proponents argue for an emphasis on virtue and vice of constitutional adjudicators[clarification needed].[citation needed]

Aretaic approaches to morality, epistemology, and jurisprudence have been the subject of intense debates. One criticism focuses on the problem of guidance; opponents, such as Robert Louden in his article "Some Vices of Virtue Ethics", question whether the idea of a virtuous moral actor, believer, or judge can provide the guidance necessary for action, belief formation, or the resolution of legal disputes.[30]

Lists of virtues


There are several lists of virtues. Socrates argued that virtue is knowledge, which suggests that there is really only one virtue.[31] The Stoics identified four cardinal virtues: wisdom, justice, courage, and temperance. Wisdom is subdivided into good sense, good calculation, quick-wittedness, discretion, and resourcefulness. Justice is subdivided into piety, honesty, equity, and fair dealing. Courage is subdivided into endurance, confidence, high-mindedness, cheerfulness, and industriousness. Temperance or moderation is subdivided into good discipline, seemliness, modesty, and self-control.[32]

John McDowell argues that virtue is a "perceptual capacity" to identify how one ought to act, and that all particular virtues are merely "specialized sensitivities" to a range of reasons for acting.[33]

Aristotle's list

Aristotle identifies approximately 18 virtues that demonstrate a person is performing their human function well.[7] He distinguished virtues pertaining to emotion and desire from those relating to the mind.[7]: II  The first he calls moral virtues, and the second intellectual virtues (though both are "moral" in the modern sense of the word).

Moral virtues

Aristotle suggested that each moral virtue was a mean (see golden mean) between two corresponding vices, one of excess and one of deficiency. Each intellectual virtue is a mental skill or habit by which the mind arrives at truth, affirming what is or denying what is not.[7]: VI  In the Nicomachean Ethics he discusses about 11 moral virtues:

Fear and confidence Rashness Courage in the face of fear[7]: III.6–9  Cowardice
Pleasure and pain Licentiousness / self-indulgence Temperance in the face of pleasure and pain[7]: III.10–12  Insensibility
Getting and spending (minor) Prodigality Liberality with wealth and possessions[7]: IV.1  Illiberality / meanness
Getting and spending (major) Vulgarity / tastelessness Magnificence with great wealth and possessions[7]: IV.2  Pettiness / stinginess
Honour and dishonour (major) Vanity Magnanimity with great honors[7]: IV.3  Pusillanimity
Honour and dishonour (minor) Ambition/empty vanity Proper ambition with normal honors[7]: IV.4  Unambitiousness / undue humility
Anger Irascibility Patience/good temper[7]: IV.5  Lack of spirit/unirascibility
Self-expression Boastfulness Truthfulness with self-expression[7]: IV.7  Understatement / mock modesty
Conversation Buffoonery Wittiness in conversation[7]: IV.8  Boorishness
Social conduct Obsequiousness Friendliness in social conduct[7]: IV.6  Cantankerousness
Shame Shyness Modesty in the face of shame or shamelessness[7]: IV.9  Shamelessness
Indignation Envy Righteous indignation in the face of injury[7]: IV.5  Malicious enjoyment / spitefulness
Intellectual virtues
  1. Nous (intelligence), which apprehends fundamental truths (such as definitions, self-evident principles)[7]: VI.11 
  2. Episteme (science), which is skill with inferential reasoning (such as proofs, syllogisms, demonstrations)[7]: VI.6 
  3. Sophia (theoretical wisdom), which combines fundamental truths with valid, necessary inferences to reason well about unchanging truths.[7]: VI.5 

Aristotle also mentions several other traits:

  • Gnome (good sense) – passing judgment, "sympathetic understanding"[7]: VI.11 
  • Synesis (understanding) – comprehending what others say, does not issue commands
  • Phronesis (practical wisdom) – knowledge of what to do, knowledge of changing truths, issues commands[7]: VI.8 
  • Techne (art, craftsmanship)[7]: VI.4 

Aristotle's list is not the only list, however. As Alasdair MacIntyre observed in After Virtue, thinkers as diverse as Homer, the authors of the New Testament, Thomas Aquinas, and Benjamin Franklin have all proposed lists.[34]



Regarding which are the most important virtues, Aristotle proposed the following nine: wisdom; prudence; justice; fortitude; courage; liberality; magnificence; magnanimity; temperance.[citation needed] In contrast, philosopher Walter Kaufmann proposed as the four cardinal virtues ambition/humility, love, courage, and honesty.[35][non sequitur]

Proponents of virtue theory[who?] sometimes argue that a central feature of a virtue is its universal applicability. In other words, any character trait defined as a virtue must reasonably be universally regarded as a virtue for all people. According to this view, it is inconsistent to claim, for example, servility as a female virtue, while at the same time not proposing it as a male one.[36]

Other proponents of virtue theory, notably Alasdair MacIntyre, respond to this objection by arguing that any account of the virtues must indeed be generated out of the community in which those virtues are to be practiced: the very word ethics implies ethos. That is to say that the virtues are, and necessarily must be, grounded in a particular time and place. What counts as a virtue in 4th-century BCE Athens would be a ludicrous guide to proper behaviour in 21st-century CE Toronto and vice versa. To take this view does not necessarily commit one to the argument that accounts of the virtues must therefore be static: moral activity—that is, attempts to contemplate and practice the virtues—can provide the cultural resources that allow people to change, albeit slowly, the ethos of their own societies.

MacIntyre appears to take this position in his seminal work on virtue ethics, After Virtue. One might cite (though MacIntyre does not) the rapid emergence of abolitionist thought in the slave-holding societies of the 18th-century Atlantic world as an example of this sort of change: over a short period of time, perhaps 1760 to 1800, in Britain, France, and British America, slave-holding, previously thought to be morally neutral or even virtuous, rapidly became seen as vicious among wide swathes of society. While the emergence of abolitionist thought derived from many sources, the work of David Brion Davis, among others,[who?] established that one source was the rapid, internal evolution of moral theory among certain sectors of these societies, notably the Quakers.

Another objection[whose?] to virtue theory is that virtue ethics does not focus on what sorts of actions are morally permitted and which ones are not, but rather on what sort of qualities someone ought to foster in order to become a good person. In other words, while some virtue theorists[who?] may not condemn, for example, murder as an inherently immoral or impermissible sort of action, they may argue that someone who commits a murder is severely lacking in several important virtues, such as compassion and fairness. Still, antagonists of the theory[who?] often object that this particular feature of the theory makes virtue ethics useless as a universal norm of acceptable conduct suitable as a base for legislation. Some virtue theorists[who?] concede this point, but respond by opposing the very notion of legitimate legislative authority instead, effectively advocating some form of anarchism as the political ideal.[citation needed] Other virtue theorists[who?] argue that laws should be made by virtuous legislators, and still another group argue that it is possible to base a judicial system on the moral notion of virtues rather than rules. Aristotle himself saw his Nicomachean Ethics as a prequel for his Politics and felt that the point of politics was to create the fertile soil for a virtuous citizenry to develop in, and that one purpose of virtue was that it helps you to contribute to a healthy polis.[7]: X.9 [14]

Some virtue theorists[who?] might respond to this overall objection with the notion of a "bad act" also being an act characteristic of vice.[citation needed] That is to say that those acts that do not aim at virtue, or that stray from virtue, would constitute our conception of "bad behavior". Although not all virtue ethicists agree to this notion, this is one way the virtue ethicist can re-introduce the concept of the "morally impermissible". One could raise an objection that he is committing an argument from ignorance by postulating that what is not virtuous is unvirtuous. In other words, just because an action or person 'lacks of evidence' for virtue does not, all else constant, imply that said action or person is unvirtuous.

Subsumed in deontology and utilitarianism


Martha Nussbaum suggested that while virtue ethics is often considered to be anti-Enlightenment, "suspicious of theory and respectful of the wisdom embodied in local practices",[37] it is actually neither fundamentally distinct from, nor does it qualify as a rival approach to deontology and utilitarianism. She argues that philosophers from these two Enlightenment traditions often include theories of virtue. She pointed out that Kant's "Doctrine of Virtue" (in The Metaphysics of Morals) "covers most of the same topics as do classical Greek theories", "that he offers a general account of virtue, in terms of the strength of the will in overcoming wayward and selfish inclinations; that he offers detailed analyses of standard virtues such as courage and self-control, and of vices, such as avarice, mendacity, servility, and pride; that, although in general, he portrays inclination as inimical to virtue, he also recognizes that sympathetic inclinations offer crucial support to virtue, and urges their deliberate cultivation."[37]

Nussbaum also points to considerations of virtue by utilitarians such as Henry Sidgwick (The Methods of Ethics), Jeremy Bentham (The Principles of Morals and Legislation), and John Stuart Mill, who writes of moral development as part of an argument for the moral equality of women (The Subjection of Women). She argues that contemporary virtue ethicists such as Alasdair MacIntyre, Bernard Williams, Philippa Foot, and John McDowell have few points of agreement and that the common core of their work does not represent a break from Kant.

Kantian critique


Immanuel Kant's position on virtue ethics is contested. Those who argue that Kantian deontology conflicts with virtue ethics include Alasdair MacIntyre, Philippa Foot, and Bernard Williams.[38] In the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals and the Critique of Practical Reason, Immanuel Kant offers many different criticisms of ethical frameworks and against moral theories before him.[citation needed] Kant rarely mentioned Aristotle by name but did not exclude his moral philosophy of virtue ethics from his critique. Many Kantian arguments against virtue ethics claim that virtue ethics is inconsistent, or sometimes that it is not a real moral theory at all.[39]

In "What Is Virtue Ethics All About?",[40] Gregory Velazco y Trianosky identified the key points of divergence between virtue ethicists and what he called "neo-Kantianism", in the form these nine neo-Kantian moral assertions:

  1. The crucial moral question is "what is it right/obligatory to do?"
  2. Moral judgments are those that concern the rightness of actions.
  3. Such judgments take the form of rules or principles.
  4. Such rules or principles are universal, not respecting persons.
  5. They are not based on some concept of human good that is independent of moral goodness.
  6. They take the form of categorical imperatives that can be justified independently of the desires of the person they apply to.
  7. They are motivating; they can compel action in an agent, also independently of that agent's desires.
  8. An action, in order to be morally virtuous, must be motivated by this sort of moral judgment (not, for example, merely coincidentally aligned with it).
  9. The virtuousness of a character trait, or virtue, derives from the relationship that trait has to moral judgments, rules, and principles.

Trianosky says that modern sympathizers with virtue ethics almost all reject neo-Kantian claim #1, and many of them also reject certain of the other claims.

Utopianism and pluralism


Robert B. Louden criticizes virtue ethics on the basis that it promotes a form of unsustainable utopianism. Trying to arrive at a single set of virtues is immensely difficult in contemporary societies as, according to Louden, they contain "more ethnic, religious, and class groups than did the moral community which Aristotle theorized about" with each of these groups having "not only its own interests but its own set of virtues as well". Louden notes in passing that MacIntyre, a supporter of virtue-based ethics, has grappled with this in After Virtue but that ethics cannot dispense with building rules around acts and rely only on discussing the moral character of persons.[41]

Topics in virtue ethics


Virtue ethics as a category


Virtue contrasts with deontological and consequentialist ethics (the three being together the most predominant contemporary normative ethical theories).

Deontological ethics, sometimes referred to as duty ethics, places the emphasis on adhering to ethical principles or duties. How these duties are defined, however, is often a point of contention and debate in deontological ethics. One predominant rule scheme used by deontologists is divine command theory. Deontology also depends upon meta-ethical realism, in that it postulates the existence of moral absolutes that make an action moral, regardless of circumstances. Immanuel Kant is considered one of the foremost theorists of deontological ethics.

The next predominant school of thought in normative ethics is consequentialism. While deontology places the emphasis on doing one's duty, consequentialism bases the morality of an action upon its outcome. Instead of saying that one has a moral duty to abstain from murder, a consequentialist would say that we should abstain from murder because it causes undesirable effects. The main contention here is what outcomes should/can be identified as objectively desirable.

The greatest happiness principle of John Stuart Mill is a commonly adopted criteria for what is objectively desirable. Mill asserts that the desirability of an action is the net amount of happiness it brings, the number of people it brings it to, and the duration of the happiness. He tries to delineate classes of happiness, some preferable to others, but there is a great deal of difficulty in classifying such concepts.

A virtue ethicist identifies virtues, desirable characteristics, that an excellent person embodies. Exhibiting these virtues is the aim of ethics, and one's actions are a reflection of one's virtues. To the virtue philosopher, action cannot be used as a demarcation of morality, because a virtue encompasses more than just a simple selection of action. Instead, a virtue is a way of being that leads the person exhibiting the virtue to make certain "virtuous" types of choices consistently in each situation. There is a great deal of disagreement within virtue ethics over what are virtues and what are not. There are also difficulties in identifying what is the "virtuous" action to take in all circumstances, and how to define a virtue.

Consequentialist and deontological theories often still employ the term virtue, but in a restricted sense, namely as a tendency or disposition to adhere to the system's principles or rules. In other words, in those theories, virtue is secondary, and the principles or rules are primary. These very different senses of what constitutes virtue, hidden behind the same word, are a potential source of confusion.[42]

This disagreement over the meaning of virtue points to a larger conflict between virtue theory and its philosophical rivals. A system of virtue theory is only intelligible if it is teleological: that is, if it includes an account of the purpose (telos) of human life, or in popular language, the meaning of life.[citation needed] Obviously, strong claims about the purpose of human life, or of what the good life for human beings is, will be controversial. Virtue theory's necessary commitment to a teleological account of human life thus puts the tradition in tension with other dominant approaches to normative ethics, which, because they focus on actions, do not bear this burden.[citation needed]

Virtue and politics


Virtue theory emphasises Aristotle's belief in the polis as the acme of political organisation,[citation needed] and the role of the virtues in enabling human beings to flourish in that environment. Classical republicanism in contrast emphasises Tacitus' concern that power and luxury can corrupt individuals and destroy liberty, as Tacitus perceived in the transformation of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire; virtue for classical republicans is a shield against this sort of corruption and a means to preserve the good life one has, rather than a means by which to achieve the good life one does not yet have. Another way to put the distinction between the two traditions is that virtue ethics relies on Aristotle's fundamental distinction between the human-being-as-he-is from the human-being-as-he-should-be, while classical republicanism relies on the Tacitean distinction of the risk-of-becoming.[43]

Virtue ethics has a number of contemporary applications.

Social and political philosophy

Within the field of social ethics, Deirdre McCloskey argues that virtue ethics can provide a basis for a balanced approach to understanding capitalism and capitalist societies.[44]


Within the field of philosophy of education, James Page argues that virtue ethics can provide a rationale and foundation for peace education.[45]

Health care and medical ethics

Thomas Alured Faunce argued that whistleblowing in the healthcare setting would be more respected within clinical governance pathways if it had a firmer academic foundation in virtue ethics.[46] He called for whistleblowing to be expressly supported in the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights.[47] Barry Schwartz argues that "practical wisdom" is an antidote to much of the inefficient and inhumane bureaucracy of modern health care systems.[48]

Technology and the virtues

In her book Technology and the Virtues,[49] Shannon Vallor proposed a series of 'technomoral' virtues that people need to cultivate in order to flourish in our socio-technological world: Honesty (Respecting Truth), Self-control (Becoming the Author of Our Desires), Humility (Knowing What We Do Not Know), Justice (Upholding Rightness), Courage (Intelligent Fear and Hope), Empathy (Compassionate Concern for Others), Care (Loving Service to Others), Civility (Making Common Cause), Flexibility (Skillful Adaptation to Change), Perspective (Holding on to the Moral Whole), and Magnanimity (Moral Leadership and Nobility of Spirit).

See also



  1. ^ Pronounced /ˌærəˈt.ɪk/.


  1. ^ Carr, David; Steutel, Jan, eds. (1999). Virtue Ethics and Moral Education. Routledge. p. 22. ISBN 9780415170734.
  2. ^ Statman, Daniel (1997). "Introduction to Virtue Ethics". Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Edinburgh University Press. p. 7. ISBN 0878402217. [Virtue Ethics] refers to a rather new (or renewed) approach to ethics, according to which the basic judgments in ethics are judgments about character.
  3. ^
  4. ^ Statman, Daniel (1997). "Introduction to Virtue Ethics". Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Edinburgh University Press. p. 8. ISBN 0878402217. Virtues are viewed as necessary conditions for, or as constitutive elements of, human flourishing and wellbeing.
  5. ^ Trianosky, Gregory Velazco y (1997). "What is Virtue Ethics All About?". In Statman, Daniel (ed.). Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Edinburgh University Press. p. 48. ISBN 0878402217. What is surprising today is how many of the most influential writers on the virtues today in fact defend some sort of teleological if not specifically utilitarian answer.
  6. ^ Trianosky, Gregory Velazco y (1997). "What is Virtue Ethics All About?". In Statman, Daniel (ed.). Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Edinburgh University Press. p. 47. ISBN 0878402217. [Aristotle regards virtue as] a constitutive element of the human good rather than merely a means to its attainment.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y Aristotle. Andronicus (ed.). Nicomachean Ethics.
  8. ^ Annas, Julia (1993). The Morality of Happiness. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 48–49. ISBN 0-19-507999-X.
  9. ^ Hursthouse, Rosalind (1997). "Virtue Ethics and the Emotions". In Statman, Daniel (ed.). Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Edinburgh University Press. p. 108. ISBN 0878402217.
  10. ^ Pincoffs, Edmund (1971). "Quandary ethics". Mind. 80 (320): 552–571. doi:10.1093/mind/LXXX.320.552.
  11. ^ Kraut, Richard (2016-01-01). Zalta, Edward N. (ed.). Aristotle's Ethics (Spring 2016 ed.). Archived from the original on 2019-03-18. Retrieved 2016-05-05.
  12. ^ McDowell, John (1979). "Virtue and Reason". The Monist. 62 (3): 331–350. doi:10.5840/monist197962319.
  13. ^ Pojman, L.P.; Fieser, J. (2009). "Virtue Theory". Ethics: Discovering Right and Wrong (6th ed.). Belmont, Calif.: Wadsworth. pp. 146–169.
  14. ^ a b Aristotle. Politics.
  15. ^ Hursthouse, Rosalind (8 Dec 2016). "Virtue Ethics". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Stanford University. Archived from the original on 23 September 2018. Retrieved 11 May 2020. Although modern virtue ethics does not have to take a 'neo-Aristotelian' or eudaimonist form..., almost any modern version still shows that its roots are in ancient Greek philosophy by the employment of three concepts derived from it. These are arête (excellence or virtue), phronesis (practical or moral wisdom) and eudaimonia (usually translated as happiness or flourishing).
  16. ^ Statman, Daniel (1997). "Introduction to Virtue Ethics". Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Edinburgh University Press. p. 11. ISBN 0878402217. [I]t is important to notice (1.) that virtue ethics is not necessarily tied to the notion of wellbeing; and (2.) that according to some philosophers, virtue ethics is necessarily, or at least typically, of a non-teleological nature.
  17. ^
  18. ^
    • Aquinas, Thomas (1485). Summa Theologica.
    • Aquinas, Thomas (1272). Commentary on the Ten Books of Ethics.
  19. ^ Sytsma, David (2021). "Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics and Protestantism". Academia Letters. 1650: 1–8. doi:10.20935/AL1650. S2CID 237798959.
  20. ^ Anscombe, G. E. M. (1958). "Modern Moral Philosophy". Philosophy. 33 (124): 1–19. doi:10.1017/s0031819100037943. JSTOR 3749051. S2CID 197875941.
  21. ^ Stocker, Michael (1976). "The Schizophrenia of Modern Ethical Theories". The Journal of Philosophy. 73 (14): 453–466. doi:10.2307/2025782. JSTOR 2025782.
  22. ^ Foot, Philippa (1978). Virtues and Vices. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. ISBN 0631127496.
  23. ^
  24. ^ Ricoeur, Paul (1992) [1990]. Oneself as Another. Translated by Blamey, Kathleen. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0-226-71329-6.
  25. ^ Crisp, Roger; Slote, Michael (1997). Virtue Ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  26. ^ Annas, Julia (1993). The Morality of Happiness. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-509652-5.
  27. ^ Becker, Lawrence C. (1998). A New Stoicism. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. p. 30. ISBN 978-0691009643.
  28. ^ Hursthouse, Rosalind (1999). On Virtue Ethics. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-924799-4.
  29. ^ Goleman, Daniel (1995). Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ. Aristotle's Challenge, pp. xix–xxiv: Bantam Books. ISBN 978-0-553-38371-3.
  30. ^ Louden, Robert B. (1984). "On some vices of virtue ethics". American Philosophical Quarterly. 21 (3): 227–236.
  31. ^ Plato, Meno.
  32. ^
    • Stephens, William O. "Stoic Ethics". www.iep.utm.edu. Retrieved 14 February 2023.
    • Cicero, Marcus Tullius. "De Officiis" [On Moral Duties]. www.oll.libertyfund.org. Retrieved 14 February 2023.
  33. ^ McDowell, John (1979). "Virtue and reason". The Monist. 62 (3): 331–350. doi:10.5840/monist197962319.
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Further reading

  • Yu, Jiyuan (1998). "Virtue: Confucius and Aristotle". Philosophy East and West. 48 (2): 323–47. doi:10.2307/1399830. JSTOR 1399830.
  • Devettere, Raymond J. (2002). Introduction to Virtue Ethics. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press.
  • Taylor, Richard (2002). An Introduction to Virtue Ethics. Amherst: Prometheus Books.
  • Darwall, Stephen, ed. (2003). Virtue Ethics. Oxford: B. Blackwell.
  • Swanton, Christine (2003). Virtue Ethics: a Pluralistic View. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Gardiner, Stephen M., ed. (2005). Virtue Ethics, Old and New. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
  • Russell, Daniel C., ed. (2013). The Cambridge Companion to Virtue Ethics. New York: Cambridge University Press.