Virtue Ethics: A Valuable Moral Theory

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In this essay I will agree with Hursthouse 's statement. I will discuss virtue ethics as a valuable moral theory and explore the influence of Aristotle. I will highlight some issues with virtue ethics, provide some possible responses, discuss the other two leading theories in normative ethics (Deontology and Consequentialism) and then finally compare all three theories together. According the Hursthouse "A virtuous agent is one who acts virtuously, that is, one who has and exercises the virtues... A virtue is a character trait a human being needs for Eudaimonia" Virtue ethics is a moral theory that endorses the importance of an agent 's character and their virtuous attributes. This differs from other moral theories such as Deontology which …show more content…
A possible response to this would be to apply Aristotle 's Doctrine of the mean in order to assess how well the virtuous person stays in line with the right level between virtue and vice. In a situation of fear, the agent should try to find the perfect balance, according to Aristotle, cowardice would be a vice if the agent did not face his fears and rashness would be a vice if the agent acted irrationally. Therefore, the perfect balance of courage is the virtue as you develop as a character with noble outcomes. Louden also takes issue with the very nature of virtue ethics and argues that the virtues are limited to what they can provide us in terms of guidance; "Due to the very nature of the moral virtues, there is thus a very limited amount of advice on moral quandaries that one can reasonably expect from the virtue-oriented …show more content…
It is an agent centred theory, rather than act centred, so we do not know which actions are good for us. Hursthouse stated that " it is concerned with Being than rather Doing" good or bad and therefore through being good we are actively doing good so the problem does not arise. However, the theory relies on a good judgment of character and a huge amount of trust in individuals. This could be problematic for both the person trusting the "virtuous" man and also for the virtuous individuals themselves. Having these moral powers comes with responsibility to perform the most virtuous outcome and vulnerability to blame if the outcome is not satisfactory. I would argue that this is not an issue for virtue ethics but rather one of its strongest attributes. The benefits of virtue ethics are huge in terms of social interactions and relationships which are key for Eudaimonia. By knowing if someone has certain enumerated virtues such as honesty, loyalty and kindness, one could know what someone would do in a situation. Therefore, Virtue Ethics doesn’t need a strict set of rules to follow in a moral

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