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Full-Text Articles in Philosophy

The Cosmological Significance Of Animal Generation, Devin Henry Dec 2104

The Cosmological Significance Of Animal Generation, Devin Henry

Devin Henry

This paper explores the relation between Aristotle’s mature theory of animal generation and his broader cosmology.


Aristotle And Habituation: Is Virtue Really Attainable Without God's Help, Roy Michael Mattson Oct 2019

Aristotle And Habituation: Is Virtue Really Attainable Without God's Help, Roy Michael Mattson

Doctoral Dissertations and Projects

We are by nature moral beings who desire virtue. This fact is borne out by innumerable studies. Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics and Eudemian Ethics remain among the most influential works on ethics and human moral psychology. Aristotle claims that human beings can develop good character traits and achieve virtue with the appropriate upbringing (what Aristotle called habituation). Much of what Aristotle says about character traits, virtue, and habituation is accepted today and inspires character education. Yet recent results in experimental psychology challenge the notion of character traits and virtue as understood by Aristotle. The challenge is the abundance of evidence ...


Superhero Movies And Politics: The Moral Obligations Of Film Makers According To Virtue Ethics, Russell Hendrickson May 2019

Superhero Movies And Politics: The Moral Obligations Of Film Makers According To Virtue Ethics, Russell Hendrickson

Senior Theses

The theory of virtue ethics implies that filmmakers have a moral obligation to explore political themes within superhero films. My thesis is comprised of four main sections. I begin by discussing the general theory of virtue ethics and what moral obligations are placed upon someone who subscribes to this moral theory. From there, I establish my argument for why film can be used as a tool of moral education, and I outline a framework for how artists can work to cultivate virtue in themselves through the use of Arnold Berleant’s Artists and Morality: Toward an Ethics of Art as ...


Greek Music Theory Vs. The Bible, Kearsten M. Kostelnik Apr 2019

Greek Music Theory Vs. The Bible, Kearsten M. Kostelnik

The Research and Scholarship Symposium

The great philosophers of Ancient Greece have been studied in depth and are known throughout society. Famous Greek philosophers and writers, such as Plato and Pythagoras, formulated theories on musical philosophy — it’s purpose, use, dangers, power, and importance in society. Greek philosophy of music heavily influenced early European society’s view and development of music, it only partially supports Biblical views and principles of music and worship. Pythagoras introduces the theory that music is more than just entertainment with his notion of Music of the Spheres but fails to align with the biblical view of stars and planets as ...


Aristotle's Quarrel With Socrates: Friendship In Political Thought, John Boersma Mar 2019

Aristotle's Quarrel With Socrates: Friendship In Political Thought, John Boersma

LSU Doctoral Dissertations

Friendship played an outsized role in ancient political thought in comparison to medieval and modern political philosophies. Most modern scholarship has paid relatively little attention to the role of friendship in ancient political philosophy. Recently, however, scholars are increasingly beginning to investigate classical conceptions of friendship. My dissertation joins this growing interest by examining the importance of friendship in the political thought of Socrates and Aristotle. Specifically, I analyze the divergent approaches that Socrates and Aristotle take to politics and trace these distinct approaches to their differing conceptions of friendship. Through an examination of two Platonic dialogues—the Lysis and ...


Aristotle On Animal Self-Motion, Daniel Avi Gilbert Coren Jan 2019

Aristotle On Animal Self-Motion, Daniel Avi Gilbert Coren

Philosophy Graduate Theses & Dissertations

Take a pen or pencil or some other small nearby object and slide it across your desk. The object moved from one place to another because you moved it. It wasn’t moved by itself. But what is the cause of your moving from where you were to where you currently are? You appear to move yourself. This dissertation focuses on what Aristotle has to say about self-motion, especially how and why non-human animals are capable of moving themselves (αὐτὰ ἑαυτὰ κινοῦσιν), that is, flying, swimming, running, crawling or slithering from one place to another. I bring out (a) new ...


Art's Truth: An Aid To Ethical Sensibility, Nova Quaoser Jan 2019

Art's Truth: An Aid To Ethical Sensibility, Nova Quaoser

CMC Senior Theses

In this paper I explore the philosophical implications of decision theory and deliberation on ethics, paying special attention to how vicious individuals yearn for a separate philosophical account. Drawing largely on Fricker, McDowell, Paul, and Nussbaum I discuss how transformative experiences open a window for understanding moral development in terms of habituation in the Aristotelian sense, and further how the vicious individual’s failure to deliberate may be remedied via a transformation through art.


The Morality Of National Defense: An Aristotelian-Thomist Account, Craig M. White May 2018

The Morality Of National Defense: An Aristotelian-Thomist Account, Craig M. White

Political Science Graduate Theses & Dissertations

In current just war theory debates, some scholars claim that a moral right to defend a nation cannot be demonstrated. Others claim that any case for the morality of even defensive war must reflect standards of interpersonal morality. This dissertation goes back to the natural law tradition behind just war theory to offer a moral argument in favor of national defense that is not based on an individualist account, but also rejects absolute accounts of national sovereignty, with its attendant problems. National defense is usually but not always just.

I defend arguing from “a tradition” in MacIntyre’s sense, and ...


"Fake It Until You Make It:" A Reflection On Film, Hypocrisy, And Christian Ethics, William Bartley Mar 2018

"Fake It Until You Make It:" A Reflection On Film, Hypocrisy, And Christian Ethics, William Bartley

Journal of Religion & Film

I will argue that a representative group of films including Mr. Lucky (with Cary Grant), Rossellini’s Il Generale della Rovere, and Galaxy Quest affirm an assumption that is as well known as it is offensively false to many: i.e., we acquire a virtue or quality of character by pretending that we already possess it—the ethic colloquially and popularly known as “fake it until you make it.” The importance and power of this ethic, as thoroughly secular as it seems to be, is best understood in the context of its Roman Catholic and ancient philosophical provenance, which for ...


A Series Of Footnotes To Plato's Philosophers, Kevin M. Cherry Mar 2018

A Series Of Footnotes To Plato's Philosophers, Kevin M. Cherry

Political Science Faculty Publications

In her magisterial Plato's Philosophers, Catherine Zuckert presents a radically new interpretation of Plato's dialogues. In doing so, she insists we must overcome reading them through the lens of Aristotle, whose influence has obscured the true nature of Plato's philosophy. However, in her works dealing with Aristotle's political science, Zuckert indicates several advantages of his approach to understanding politics. In this article, I explore the reasons why Zuckert finds Aristotle a problematic guide to Plato's philosophy as well as what she sees as the character and benefits of Aristotle's political theory. I conclude by ...


Philosophy By The Pint, Kyle Robert Quinn Jan 2018

Philosophy By The Pint, Kyle Robert Quinn

Senior Projects Spring 2018

Senior Project submitted to The Division of Social Studies of Bard College


Aristotle On Democracy And Democracies, Kevin M. Cherry Jan 2018

Aristotle On Democracy And Democracies, Kevin M. Cherry

Political Science Faculty Publications

It is a commonplace that Aristotle, like his teacher Plato, was a critic of democracy. This is, to a certain extent, true: Plato and Aristotle both saw democracy, at least as practiced in Athens, as prone to tumultuousness and imprudence. The failed Sicilian expedition, the execution of Socrates, the failure to heed Demosthenes's warnings about Philip of Macedon and Aristotle's own reported flight from Athens all highlighted the weaknesses of Athenian democratic institutions. Yet Aristotle's understanding of political science requires him to consider not only what the simply best regime might be, as Socrates purports to do ...


Theoria As Practice And As Activity, Julie Ward Jan 2018

Theoria As Practice And As Activity, Julie Ward

Philosophy: Faculty Publications and Other Works

In Book X chapter 7 of Nicomachean Ethics (henceforth, EN), Aristotle reaches two decisive conclusions: frst, the activity of our intellect which he terms θεωρία is the highest kind and comprises “complete happiness” (ἡ τελεῖα εὐδαίμονια, EN 1177a19); second, a theoretical life, being divine, counts as the highest, and is the one to aim at (EN 1178a5-7). These are compelling claims, rightly generating much scholarly comment, particularly about the balance of excellent theoretical and moral activity in the best human life.2 Yet the present paper proposes to follow a diferent standard, one with a broader, thematic approach to θεωρία ...


Learning To Live And Love Virtuously, Henry Deruff Jan 2018

Learning To Live And Love Virtuously, Henry Deruff

CMC Senior Theses

John Stuart Mill and Immanuel Kant authored two of the most famous pieces of work in ethical theory (Utilitarianism and Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, respectively), yet both fail for various reasons to give us direction by way of living good lives. This thesis begins by outlining those shortcomings, before offering Aristotelian virtue ethics as the solution. Virtue ethics, as conceived by Aristotle, Alasdair MacIntyre, and Julia Annas, delineates a process – grounded in our real lives – by which we may improve as people and therefore flourish, or live good, moral lives: the habituation of the virtues. Importantly, virtue ethics ...


The Mall Ain’T Dead Yet! An Aristotelian Argument For The Continuation Of Physical Retail Space With The Rise Of Modern Technology, Tarah Gilbreth Jan 2018

The Mall Ain’T Dead Yet! An Aristotelian Argument For The Continuation Of Physical Retail Space With The Rise Of Modern Technology, Tarah Gilbreth

CMC Senior Theses

According to Aristotle, for a human being to live their best life, that is a life that flourishes, is to live a political life. A political life is lived best in a polis , or a self - sufficient community, so therefore, the most flourishing human life is one lived in a polis . Also, for a polis to be self - sufficient, its citizens must be flourishing, so there exists a special sort of constitutive relationship between the polis and its citizens. There are certain capacities available to human beings in the polis that promote their flourishing (namely loyalty and trust) that help ...


Differentiating Averroes’ Accounts Of The Metaphysics Of Human Epistemology In His Middle And Long Commentaries On Aristotle’S De Anima, Caleb H A Brown Jun 2017

Differentiating Averroes’ Accounts Of The Metaphysics Of Human Epistemology In His Middle And Long Commentaries On Aristotle’S De Anima, Caleb H A Brown

Montview Liberty University Journal of Undergraduate Research

Averroes (an Islamic Andalusian philosopher in the 12th century) discusses the metaphysics of human epistemology extensively, and his socio-religious context sheds light on this discussion. Several of his works, most prominently his three commentaries on Aristotle’s De Anima, attempt to explain how finite, particular minds interact with universal, eternal intelligibles. Current scholarship focuses on the two longer commentaries, the Middle Commentary and the Long Commentary, but there is no consensus regarding which of these presents Averroes’ final articulation of the metaphysics of human epistemology. Those who maintain that Averroes wrote the Middle Commentary last tend to minimize the ...


The Goal Of Habituation In Aristotle: A Neo-Mechanical Account, Dioné Harley May 2017

The Goal Of Habituation In Aristotle: A Neo-Mechanical Account, Dioné Harley

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Standard interpretations of Aristotle’s ethics construe the habituation phase in his theory of moral education as markedly robust regarding the moral condition that must be achieved before the learner can attend lectures on the noble and political questions in general. These “intellectualists” argue that habituation engages the rational part of the soul so that the learner develops the capacity to identify that an action is noble, which involves taking pleasure in the nobility of the act. Practical reason will provide an understanding of why the action is noble. I argue against intellectualist readings of habituation and defend a neo-mechanical ...


What's So Private About Private Property?, Matthew Blake Wilson Feb 2017

What's So Private About Private Property?, Matthew Blake Wilson

Graduate Dissertations and Theses

This work attempts to determine what kinds of institutions—if any—the state should implement to protect private property, and investigates how individuals and communities operating within those institutions ought to behave. Because the laws produced by such institutions may conflict with community rights, social welfare, and justice, the political authorities—including judges and legislators—who operate the institutions must determine whether, and under what conditions, individual property rights ought to prevail over conflicting rights. I argue that considerations of privacy are necessary for making these determinations. Privacy—the condition that requires limitations upon the ability of others to access ...


Aristotle And Game Theory On Human Nature And Ethics, Beau R. Revlett Jan 2017

Aristotle And Game Theory On Human Nature And Ethics, Beau R. Revlett

Oswald Research and Creativity Competition

This paper considers whether Aristotle’s ethics is consistent with one modern scientific view of humans. The modern scientific view discussed is based on Nancy Cartwright’s argument that game theory uncovers something akin to the Aristotelian natures of humans. Following Martha Nussbaum, this paper focuses on the role of human nature in Aristotle’s ethics. Specifically, it focuses on two kinds of ethical conclusions Aristotle grounds in claims about human nature: one about what can be coherently desired for a human being, one about the social arrangements appropriate to human beings. This paper considers Nussbaum’s interpretation that Aristotle ...


Truth In The Abstract And In The Particular, Eric Anderson Bleys Jan 2017

Truth In The Abstract And In The Particular, Eric Anderson Bleys

Senior Projects Spring 2017

Senior Project submitted to The Division of Social Studies of Bard College.


Being Wise Before Wisdom: The Historical Development Of Phronēsis From Homer To Aristotle, And Its Consequences For Hans-Georg Gadamer's Hermeneutic Ethics, Giancarlo Tarantino Jan 2017

Being Wise Before Wisdom: The Historical Development Of Phronēsis From Homer To Aristotle, And Its Consequences For Hans-Georg Gadamer's Hermeneutic Ethics, Giancarlo Tarantino

Dissertations

Hans-Georg Gadamer claims that the Aristotelian concept of "phronesis" or "practical wisdom" plays a decisive role throughout the process of interpretation and understanding. Scholars have often been divided over just what this means or entails for hermeneutics. This dissertation argues for a strongly ethical reading of Gadamer's claim, based on (1) a Gadamerian view of the nature of concepts and conceptuality, and (2) an historical reconstruction of the development of phronesis from Homer to Aristotle. Recovering forgotten and underappreciated historical features of phronesis allows for a critical revaluation of Gadamer's philosophy as a whole, including the outlines of ...


Character Luck And Moral Responsibility: The Character Of The Ordinary Person In Aristotle's Rhetoric And Politics, Marcella Linn Jan 2017

Character Luck And Moral Responsibility: The Character Of The Ordinary Person In Aristotle's Rhetoric And Politics, Marcella Linn

Dissertations

There are many significant factors, such as one’s natural temperaments and upbringing, that are outside of one’s control and affect one’s character. This calls into question one’s responsibility for one’s character, and if we are not responsible for our characters, then it seems we cannot be held responsible for the many actions that stem from them. I will show how a person can be responsible for her character and actions stemming from it despite the pervasiveness of character luck. To do this, I develop an account of character and responsibility from various passages in Aristotle ...


Aristotle And Darwin: Antagonists Or Kindred Spirits?, James G. Lennox Jan 2017

Aristotle And Darwin: Antagonists Or Kindred Spirits?, James G. Lennox

Philosophic Exchange

In the decades following the forging of the so-called Neo-Darwinian Synthesis in the 1940s, a number of its philosophical defenders created a myth about what Charles Darwin was up against, a viewpoint called “typological essentialism” often attributed to Aristotle. In this paper I first sketch the history of how this myth was created. I then establish that it is a myth by providing an account of Aristotle’s essentialism as it is actually displayed in his philosophy of biology and in his biological practice. It has nothing to do with the ‘mythic’ version. We then turn to what Darwin was ...


The Form Of Politics: Aristotle And Plato On Friendship By John Von Heyking, Nalin Ranasinghe Jan 2017

The Form Of Politics: Aristotle And Plato On Friendship By John Von Heyking, Nalin Ranasinghe

Philosophy Department Faculty Works

Heyking’s ascent from Aristotle to Plato implies that something Platonic was lost in Aristotle’s accounts of friendship and politics. Plato’s views on love and soul turn out to have more in common with early Christianity. Stressing differences between eros and thumos, using Voegelin’s categories to discuss the Platonic Good, and expanding on Heyking’s use of Hermes, I show how tragic culture and true politics can be further enhanced by refining erotic friendship, repudiating Augustinian misanthropy, positing minimum doctrines about soul and city, and basing reason on Hermes rather than Apollo.


The Poet And The Polemist: Demystifying The Natural Law Theory Of John Milton, John J. Mazola Dec 2016

The Poet And The Polemist: Demystifying The Natural Law Theory Of John Milton, John J. Mazola

School of Arts & Sciences Theses

A summation of the influences behind Milton's Natural Law theory as found in the works of Aristotle, Grotius, Hobbes, and Thomas Aquinas. The essay's intent is to uncover this important thread that runs through both Milton's Poetic Verse as well as his Polemic tracts.


Species Pluralism: Conceptual, Ontological, And Practical Dimensions, Justin Bzovy Nov 2016

Species Pluralism: Conceptual, Ontological, And Practical Dimensions, Justin Bzovy

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Species are central to biology, but there is currently no agreement on what the adequate species concept should be, and many have adopted a pluralist stance: different species concepts will be required for different purposes. This thesis is a multidimensional analysis of species pluralism. First I explicate how pluralism differs monism and relativism. I then consider the history of species pluralism. I argue that we must re-frame the species problem, and that re-evaluating Aristotle's role in the histories of systematics can shed light on pluralism. Next I consider different forms of pluralism: evolutionary and extra-evolutionary species pluralism, which differ ...


Aristotle And Michael Of Ephesus On The Movement And Progression Of Animals Translated, With Introduction And Notes [Translation Of Studien Und Materialen Zur Geschichte Der Philosophie], Anthony Preus Nov 2016

Aristotle And Michael Of Ephesus On The Movement And Progression Of Animals Translated, With Introduction And Notes [Translation Of Studien Und Materialen Zur Geschichte Der Philosophie], Anthony Preus

Anthony Preus

The translation of Michael of Ephesus, Commentaries on The Movement of Animals and the Progression of Animals, here presented, are the first into a modern language. These are the only surviving Greek commentaries on these treaties.


Science And The Philosophy In Aristotle's Biological Works, Anthony Preus Nov 2016

Science And The Philosophy In Aristotle's Biological Works, Anthony Preus

Anthony Preus

The contents of this book cover observations and theories, science and philosophy in Aristotle's "Generation of Animals," understanding the organic parts, necessity and purpose in the explanation of nature, notes and a bibliography.


Essence And Necessity, And The Aristotelian Modal Syllogistic: A Historical And Analytical Study, Daniel James Vecchio Oct 2016

Essence And Necessity, And The Aristotelian Modal Syllogistic: A Historical And Analytical Study, Daniel James Vecchio

Dissertations (2009 -)

The following is a critical and historical account of Aristotelian Essentialism informed by recent work on Aristotle’s modal syllogistic. The semantics of the modal syllogistic are interpreted in a way that is motivated by Aristotle, and also make his validity claims in the Prior Analytics consistent to a higher degree than previously developed interpretative models. In Chapter One, ancient and contemporary objections to the Aristotelian modal syllogistic are discussed. A resolution to apparent inconsistencies in Aristotle’s modal syllogistic is proposed and developed out of recent work by Patterson, Rini, and Malink. In particular, I argue that the semantics ...


Topic 6: Aristotelian Ethics: The Virtue Of Success, Lee Eysturlid Jul 2016

Topic 6: Aristotelian Ethics: The Virtue Of Success, Lee Eysturlid

Lee W. Eysturlid

No abstract provided.