Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

The Audience of the Nicomachean Ethics

Thomas W. Smith
The Journal of Politics
Vol. 62, No. 1 (Feb., 2000), pp. 166-186
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2647602
Page Count: 21
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($14.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The Audience of the Nicomachean Ethics
Preview not available

Abstract

The question, "Who is the audience of the Nicomachean Ethics?" is crucial for understanding Aristotle's political philosophy. Leo Strauss and Aristide Tessitore have both argued that it consisted in part of gentlemen who uncritically accepted the worth of moral virtue as the starting point and horizon of the inquiry. By contrast, I argue that Aristotle seeks a common starting point with his audience in a commitment to noble action. Aristotle connects the love of noble action with the pursuit of honor. Yet, while this pursuit led some of his students to value moral virtue, it led others to value mastery. I explain the audience's equivocal understanding of virtue by tracing it back to the psychic motivations of the pursuit of honor in ancient Greece. This account helps us better understand Aristotle's overall pedagogical strategy in the Ethics.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
[166]
    [166]
  • Thumbnail: Page 
167
    167
  • Thumbnail: Page 
168
    168
  • Thumbnail: Page 
169
    169
  • Thumbnail: Page 
170
    170
  • Thumbnail: Page 
171
    171
  • Thumbnail: Page 
172
    172
  • Thumbnail: Page 
173
    173
  • Thumbnail: Page 
174
    174
  • Thumbnail: Page 
175
    175
  • Thumbnail: Page 
176
    176
  • Thumbnail: Page 
177
    177
  • Thumbnail: Page 
178
    178
  • Thumbnail: Page 
179
    179
  • Thumbnail: Page 
180
    180
  • Thumbnail: Page 
181
    181
  • Thumbnail: Page 
182
    182
  • Thumbnail: Page 
183
    183
  • Thumbnail: Page 
184
    184
  • Thumbnail: Page 
185
    185
  • Thumbnail: Page 
186
    186