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8 Cards in this Set

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Virtue ethics

Virtue ethics is an agent centred ethical theory that looks at the moral character of the agent rather than looking at the action itself

virtue ethics - plato

-living a moral life is about reaching the highest good:

highest good: the right cultivation of the soul and the harmonious well being of life

happiness is achieved through certain virtues:





goodness comes from a balance of these virtues

Virtue ethics- aristotle

We act in a virtuous way to reach eudamonia:

eudamonia: the ultimate goal for humanity, which we reach by acting with virtue,in particular reason:

reason: the supreme human virtue

there are two types of virtue:

moral virtue: developed by habit and lifestyle

intellectual virtue: developed by education and practice

-we all have the capability to become virtuous

-only a few will do so, and this is widely based upon social factors

-we can learn virtue by following those who act with virtue as they show us moral excellence

virtue ethics - aquinas

the golden mean: the medium between the vice of deficiency and the vice of excess

in order for us to devlop virtues we need practical wisdom(phronesis):

-practical wisdom is needed to act upon the golden mean

-it is aquired as we grow and move towards a virtuous life

modern virtue ethics (hursthouse)

-virtues are complex, many people act with virtue for personal gain, however this is not virtueous

-ie, you need to be honest simply to be honest

-in order to reach eudamonia you need to act with virtue in the non-selfish sense

modern virtue ethics (slote)

virtues are the 'inner disposition of the individual'

-thus we act with virtue by examining the disposition of the individual

-admirable is a better word than good as good needs to be defined

-we identify admirable traits by looking to the admirable

modern virtue ethics (foot)

attempts to modernise aristotle

-goodness is the natural flourishing of humanity

-ethics is about making the world a better place

-virtues are beneficial to everyone as they contribute towards a good life

-virtues are only virtuous if used correctly

weaknesses of virtue ethics

-virtue ethics is difficult to apply to moral problems since the only guideline it gives is to act with virtue and this can be applied in a multitude of ways

-virtues can be used incorrectly:

war is unjust, courage is needed to fight in a war, courage is seemingly a virtue