Plato aristotle essay questions

The necessity of doing what one thinks is right even in the face of universal opposition, and the need to pursue knowledge even when opposed, which he did end up paying the price for these ideas in the end. Socrates was unconcerned with physical or metaphysical questions; the issue of primary importance for him was ethics and living a good life. Plato was born in around BC and lived until BC, he was a classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy of Athens… which was the first institution of higher learning in the Western world.

Plato aristotle essay questions

Preliminaries Aristotle wrote two ethical treatises: In any case, these two works cover more or less the same ground: Both treatises examine the conditions in which praise or blame are appropriate, and the nature of pleasure and friendship; near the end of each work, we find a brief discussion of the proper relationship between human beings and the divine.

Though the general point of view expressed in each work is the same, there are many subtle differences in organization and content as well. Clearly, one is a re-working of the other, and although no single piece of evidence shows conclusively what their order is, it is widely assumed that the Nicomachean Ethics is a later and improved version of the Eudemian Ethics.

Not all of the Eudemian Ethics was revised: Perhaps the most telling indication of this ordering is that in several instances the Nicomachean Ethics develops a theme about which its Eudemian cousin is silent.

Only the Nicomachean Ethics discusses the close relationship between ethical inquiry and politics; only the Nicomachean Ethics critically examines Solon's paradoxical dictum that no man should be counted happy until he is dead; and only the Nicomachean Ethics gives a series of arguments for the superiority of the philosophical life to the political life.

The remainder of this article will therefore focus on this work. Page and line numbers shall henceforth refer to this treatise. It ranges over topics discussed more fully in the other two works and its point of view is similar to theirs. Why, being briefer, is it named the Magna Moralia?

Because each of the two papyrus rolls into which it is divided is unusually long. Just as a big mouse can be a small animal, two big chapters can make a small book. A few authors in antiquity refer to a work with this name and attribute it to Aristotle, but it is not mentioned by several authorities, such as Cicero and Diogenes Laertius, whom we would expect to have known of it.

Some scholars hold that it is Aristotle's earliest course on ethics—perhaps his own lecture notes or those of a student; others regard it as a post-Aristotelian compilation or adaption of one or both of his genuine ethical treatises. Although Aristotle is deeply indebted to Plato's moral philosophy, particularly Plato's central insight that moral thinking must be integrated with our emotions and appetites, and that the preparation for such unity of character should begin with childhood education, the systematic character of Aristotle's discussion of these themes was a remarkable innovation.

No one had written ethical treatises before Aristotle. Plato's Republic, for example, does not treat ethics as a distinct subject matter; nor does it offer a systematic examination of the nature of happiness, virtue, voluntariness, pleasure, or friendship. To be sure, we can find in Plato's works important discussions of these phenomena, but they are not brought together and unified as they are in Aristotle's ethical writings.

The Human Good and the Function Argument The principal idea with which Aristotle begins is that there are differences of opinion about what is best for human beings, and that to profit from ethical inquiry we must resolve this disagreement. He insists that ethics is not a theoretical discipline: In raising this question—what is the good?

He assumes that such a list can be compiled rather easily; most would agree, for example, that it is good to have friends, to experience pleasure, to be healthy, to be honored, and to have such virtues as courage at least to some degree. The difficult and controversial question arises when we ask whether certain of these goods are more desirable than others.

Aristotle's search for the good is a search for the highest good, and he assumes that the highest good, whatever it turns out to be, has three characteristics: To be eudaimon is therefore to be living in a way that is well-favored by a god.

But Aristotle never calls attention to this etymology in his ethical writings, and it seems to have little influence on his thinking.

These terms play an evaluative role, and are not simply descriptions of someone's state of mind. No one tries to live well for the sake of some further goal; rather, being eudaimon is the highest end, and all subordinate goals—health, wealth, and other such resources—are sought because they promote well-being, not because they are what well-being consists in.

But unless we can determine which good or goods happiness consists in, it is of little use to acknowledge that it is the highest end. One important component of this argument is expressed in terms of distinctions he makes in his psychological and biological works.The Crito - Plato’s democracy essay Such philosophers as Plato and Aristotle studied the processes happening in the society during “democracy”.

Plato was one of the most furious enemies of democracy. It is very important to say that the arguments that he performed against . Essay about The Ideal Governments of Plato and Aristotle - In Ancient Greece, people known as philosophers began contemplating the world in a different light.

They had a different way of thinking than what was normal in the day. Study Help Essay Questions Bookmark this page Manage My Reading List What are two fundamental assumptions of Aristotle's approach to ethics that are typical of most ancient Greek philosophers?

Essays on Plato and Aristotle. The name of Aristotle is for many generations associated with great ideas and contribution into metaphysical, political, ethical views in the field of philosophy, as well as biology, botany, mathematics, medicine and agriculture.

Plato aristotle essay questions

The Crito - Plato’s democracy essay Such philosophers as Plato and Aristotle studied the processes happening in the society during “democracy”. Plato was one of the most furious enemies of democracy.

Aristotle Essays Biography

It is very important to say that the arguments that he performed against democracy still possess their primary power. Essay about The Ideal Governments of Plato and Aristotle - In Ancient Greece, people known as philosophers began contemplating the world in a different light.

They had a different way of thinking than what was normal in the day.

Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle Essays