Taking Life Seriously: A Study of the Argument of the Nicomachean Ethics / Edition 2

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Overview

This is a wonderful book, intended as a companion and guide to a reading of the Ethics . Sparshott's intention is to display the continuity of thought in the text, rather than the traditional approach of examining and criticizing individual sections. The chapters are entitled What is Best for People (I i-xii; 1094a1-1102a4), Reason in Action (I xiii-VI; 1102a5-1145a11); The Pathology of Practical Reason (VII; 1145a15-1154b34); Love, Consciousness, and Society (VIII-IX; 1155a1-1172a15); The Worth of Pleasure (X i-v; 1172a19-1176a29); and The Good Life and the Best Life: Outline of a Discourse (X vi-viii; 1176a30-1179a32), and there is an interesting appendix on the world of Aristotle's theoretical construction. All Greek is transliterated and a glossary provided for these terms. The author's love of his topic is obvious throughout this book, which is written with clarity and cogency. It deserves to be read by everyone seeking to understand Aristotle's Ethics .
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Editorial Reviews

Sarah Broadie

'Sparshott's refusal to deal with Aristotle in terms of standard scholarly problems is matched by his refusal (or inability) to write academic prose. What he gives us instead is sharp, chatty, sly, at times rambling, occasionally downright perverse... Readers will also find the book to be sensibly organized; that the author is generally cultivated in classics and philosophy; and that he makes his way by taking Aristotle and Aristotle's unspoiled readers extremely seriously, though in neither case at arm's length.'

Books in Canada - David Foster

'Sparshott succeeds in making us confront the Ethics as a whole, and his attempt to make sense of the work as we have it is refreshing in an age when scholars are often more interested in the provenance of the text than its substance.'

D.R.C. Reed

'This exceptional book deserves to replace W.F.R. Hardie's Aristotle's Ethical Theory (1968) as the standard one-volume companion to Aristotle's Nichomachean Ethics (EN). ... Few will agree with this detailed reading at every point, but it repays careful consideration. Glossary of transliterated Greek terms. Interesting quasi-ethnographic appendix, "Aristotle's World," which is not about fourth-century Athens but about the world of Aristotle's theoretical construction. Highly recommended.'

David Foster

'Sparshott succeeds in making us confront the Ethics as a whole, and his attempt to make sense of the work as we have it is refreshing in an age when scholars are often more interested in the provenance of the text than its substance.'

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802071798
  • Publisher: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division
  • Publication date: 4/28/1996
  • Series: Toronto Studies in Philosophy Series
  • Edition description: REVISED
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 461
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Francis Sparshott is University Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto. He is the author of numerous books of poetry and philosophy including A Measured Pace: Toward a Philosophical Understanding of the Arts of Dance.
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