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Chapter 11:  The Virtues at Athens

I.  Many moral debates in real societies find context in the
heroic tales

A.  Plato

1.  Is not showing error held by

2.  Is showing conflict in the inherited political / moral

3.  Removing Homeric vocabulary from Athenian moral debate

B.  Disconnect between Homeric values and Classical values as
explored by Sophocles in Philoctetes

1. Odysseus displays Homeric virtues

2. Ultimately resorts to deceit, a trickery praised by Homeric virtue

3.  Neoptolemus disagrees, thinks this is immoral, represents the
Athenian / Classical Model

4.  Sophocles exploys deus ex
to resolve (Heracles)

5.  Orestes is civic
obligation versus familial obligation

II.  The Athenian debate is not simply a result of familial versus
state context

A.  Kinship nations survive and
aristocratic society's values endure

B.  Virtue becames detached from any particular person (Hector's
virtue virsus Virtue)

III.  The separation of virtue from any particular person was an
Athenian invention

A.  Involvement in the greatest style="font-style: italic;">polis demands we know "good
citizen" vis-a-vis a "good man"

B.  What do Athenians share?

1.  Dikaisune has differing
competitions, is it cooperative or competitive (justice)

2.  Athenians inherit this lack of clarity

3.  Athenian views were not homogeneous

C. Four individuals address the incoherence of Athenian moral
code:  Plato, the Sophists, Aristotle, and Sophocles

1.  Each reacts with certain

2.  ALL assume that virtue must be expressed in a polis

3.  All shore a notion of competition

a.  Neverlearned from the illiad

b.  only makes success the goal of action

4.  Each asks how to order the virtues

5.  While the accounts differ the virtues are always exercised as
part of agon, and within a polis

6.  The Sophist Thrasymachus see success as defined within a
particular city, a city-by-city 

a.  That causes problems for them
(see the Encomium of Helen)

b.  He appears to redefine X but uses the 'traditional' definition
of X in so doing

7.  Plato

a.  Socrates' Gogias and Polus get
acught in the dichotomy described above

b.  Callicles does not

i.  He accepts the deductive result, to dominate by intellect is permissible
ii.  He and Sacrates agree that wihich produces happiness and satisfaction of desire must be the result of pursuring virtue - Socrates is bound

c.  Desire must be satiated in the ideal city (Thus, Republic is wirtten)
d.  As virtue’s pursuit creates more good men, the actual virtuous city becomes a myth, regrettably.  They pursue politics, not philosophy.  Philosophy properly metes out the parts of the soul and their influence, reason is critical to the achievement of the republic

8.  Reason specifically nets us.

a. Each part of the soul behaving

b.  Justice is keeping the soul bounded (daikaisune)

c.  Plato rejects reletavism

d.  Rival goods cannot battle
each other

V.  Tragic drama is the art form that pits reason's best
suggestion for moral behavior against sittlichkeit-codified
morality (Sophocles)

VI.  Accounting of Antigone

A.  Platonic:  Virtue's necessity and the presence of all 3 parts
B.  Human desires cannot be unified into one moral scheme
C. sohpoclean model
1.  There exists a moral order.
2.  We cannot bring it into harmony with our daily lives

3.  We must choose, but we shall be made to bear the punishment

4.  Individuals exist within the community who transcend it (as
the winners who lost of the Illiad could not)

5.  The Sophoclean protagonist's life follows a pattern like that
of an epic hero.

6.  To Sophocles, life was a dramatic narrative, to the Heroics,
life was an epic poem (note, both are teleological narratives to life)

D.  Sophocles is not simply a battle of people but of whole
ethical systems

E  The sophoclean victim transcends and isl bound by the the rules
of the community.  Emotivists are not

1.  Thisk ends the Heroic moral Era

2.  Assumse a moral order does in fact exist

3.  Aristotle addresses this split

Chapter 12:  Aristotle’s Account of the Virtues

I.  Aristotle does not see himself as the historical point. 

Aristotle in history comes only in the Scholastic era.  Aristotle
has little sense of historical perspective.

II.  We consider the Nicomachean Ethics

A.  His account is an elucidation
of the ethics embedded in tho polis

B.  Humans are functional objects

C.  All human activity aims for a good

D.  The state of human good is 'eudaimonia'

1.  The state of being well

2.  Aristotle does not enumerate the content

3.  The virtues are qualities which enable / assist movement to

4.  Right action issues from virtue's exercise

III.  The virtues and reality

A.  What is good for a man versus
short-term happiness

B. We must judge how to do the right thing at the right time in the
right fashion

C.  Accords vnery few rules

D.  The rules that are to be followed are the rules of the polis,
everything else is virtue

E.  The virtues find their exercise in a properly constituted
state (Anne Frank paradox)

1.  States embrace virtues that
enable their purpose

2. States punish accordingly for sabotaging these purposes

3.  States would rate the virtues and the gravity of offenses

4.  2 types of failure

a.  Failure to act properly

b. willful injury

5.  Both failures undermine the constitution of the state

F.  Crucial link between the law and virtue.  The law can
only by applied by the just

1.  Law and morality are unified
2.  The just man can recognize the law's spirit and apply it to the particular when th elaw is insufficient

G.  Excellence requires intelligence (practical reason)

1.  Aristotle sees the latter as enabling the former

2.  Modern society follows Kant: a good bureaucrat can be stupid

3.  Practical intelligence =~ justice + virtuous education

IV. Friendship

A.  The bond between citizens in a
community that seeks eudaimonia for its citizens

B.  Constitutes the polis

C.  In small communities political exercise assisted the goals of
the polis

D.  It is not a private affair, it is public

E.  Choice between friends and countryment is not possible, the
existence of one ore the other precludes this difficulty

F.  The modern city is countryless masses banded for utility,
nothing like a polis, nowhere is Aristotle's friendship

G.  Conflict

1.  Eliminable
2.  Agon is disliked
3.  Tragin heroes have tragic flaws, not lives in tragic societies
4.  Dialectic fades to treatise

H.  Friendship has 3 types

1.  Mutual utility

2.  Mutual pleasure

3.  Pursuit of shared goals (the basis of friendship)

I.  Barbarians

1. non-Greek

2. Incapable of friendship, he is outside a polis

3.  Barbarians and slaves have fixed and flawed natures

4.  Not adressing these outsiders need not undermine Aristotle's

J.  Two key points

1.  Enjoyment comes from
excellence in an activity.  We cannot pursue simply pleasure in

2.  Statements of man's finding X useful are set qua an animal,
not qua a man

3.  Virtues cannot be defined in terms of the pleasurable or the

V. Aristotle on pratical reason is right, and his account has key

A.  An action is the conclusion of
a syllogism

B.  Practical Reason has p4 essential elements

1.  The wants of the agent

2.  Wanting X is beneficial to a Y of such-and-such type

3.  Asserts incident I is a situation of this type

4.  Action

VI.  Practical reason and the virtues:  The virtues provide
the premises upon which practical reasons builds its syllogisms leading
to action.

VII.  Aristotle is in dange on

A.  What if there is no metaphysical biology, does teleology crumble?
B.  The polis is gone, we are all barbarians, does is scheme survive
C. How to resolve Antigone's bind?
D.  Do these questions get resolved in Medieval Aristotelianism? chapter

Chapter 13:  Medieval Aspects and Occasions

Synopsis:  Aristotle encounters Christianity and the Christians
try to adopt him into their virtue structure.  The narrative to

life is the Medieval quest where virtues are the tools which enable one
to overcome the snares as one works to attain one's

goals.  Ultimately this opens up Aristotle to everyone, even
outside the polis, but changes the telological structure from

biology to " You must achieve your quest".

I.  Aristotle's model was
unto diverse ideologies during his time and after

A.  Strong inherited influence of the hero-culture, this is not outright supplanted
B. Works to tie pagan and Christian virtues (Constantine)
C. Conflict with Biblical knowledge as the Bible claims to be all-encompassing
1.  Martyrdom
2. How does a Christian relate to daily life
a.  In terms of virtues
i.  Justice
ii.  Prudence
iii.  Temperance
iv.  Courage

b.  How to practice?  As thelogical virtues

i.  Faith

ii.  Hope

iii.  Charity

II.  Abelard’s Interpretation of Aristotle

A.  Pagan view is incomplete

1.  Anadequate conception of good

2. ...of will viz good and evil

B. Devects of character (vice) and divnine Law (sin)

C. True arena of morality is will, a recurrence of Stoicism

1.  Abandon telos

2.  Do right for its own sake

3. Paradoxical:  universal law versus community's ethos

4.  Stoicism waxes when the centrality of virtues wanes

D.  How can virtueless design focused on will operate

III.  Allan of Lille sees the gap between Stoicism and a
telos-less world

A. Virtues define political life

B.  Coupled with charity the virtues do God's work

IV. For what type of society was Lille’s philosophy designed?

A.  One without social order
institutions (university, courts)

B.  Such preserving dialog extends lifetimes of key dynamics:

1.  Loyalty and Justice

2.  military virtues

3. patience and purity

C. loyalty and Justice

1.  Becket v. Henry II, both
shared polis live view of society but in the Christian era you are
always community bonded by God's community

2.  Each understood the weight of tcheir decisions to face off

3.  Henry and Becket both understood the same grounds, Henry VIII
had lost the grounds of the battle.

D. The Classicist/ Christian setup  intervention brought confilcts
that Aristotle could never understand

1.  You could not befrind a 'bad'

2.  Forgiveness is foreign

3.  Charity

4.  No rcognition of a last-minute confession

5.  No notion of an enacted evil, all evils are privations

ASIDE:  A particular view of virtues is bonded to a particular
narrative structure: in this case the medieval quest

6.  Maintains a teleological character different from Aristotle

a. none is excluded from attaining

b. adds historical perspective

7. The virtues enable men to surmount
evil in their historical journey

8.  Aquinas has problems addressing (the zenith of this mode of

a.  Odd tables of virtue

b.  Does not address the valuation of rival goods -cruical letter
C from VII in previous chapter

V.  The real achievement was putting historical perspective with
Aristotelian morality, but this does not address sufficiently
Aristotle’s weaknesses
from section VII of the previous outline!

Chapter 14:  The Nature of Virtue

Synopsis:  MacIntyre finishes with his historical recounting and
tries to take the Aristotelian setup and define these terms in the
modern era.  We will be looking to create a modern setup of
Aristotelianism that is: teleological,
open to all, free of a polis, and allows us to resolve rival goods

I. Key features of virtue systems discussed

A.  List of virtues varies widely

B. What is a virtue varies widely

C. The many hold institutional hegemony

D.  We argue for a multifaceted answer

II.  Aspects of the conceputal thread of virtue

A.  Virtues alwaiys have a social and moral context to which they find explanation.  This dictum is rooted in 3 aspects.
1.  Existence of a practice
2.  Narrative order to life
3.  Moral tradition

B.  On Practice

1. Practices are the place of primary
exhibition of a virtue

2. Caveat

a.  Virtues can be exercised
outside of a practice

b. Practice is a term of art

3.  Practice Defined:

A complex, coherent and socially established cooperative human activity
a.  Goods internal to this act are realized in doing the activity "excellently"
b.  Excellently is self defininng and self modifying
c.  Human conceptions of the goods are augmented
4.  Practices can be contingent or necessary
a.  Chess playing for candy (contingent)
b.  Playing chess to win, to be a winner, to be a player
c. Internal reason
i.  Can be spoken of only in terms of the activity
ii.  Con only be understood by those competent in the practice

5.  Practices involve standards, obedience to rules, achievements
of goods

6.  External goods involve scarcity, X has more Y, Z has less Y.

a.  External goods are competed for

b. There exist winners and losers

c.  Sucssess in making internal goods is good for the communityas
a whole

d.  A virtue is a quality that
enables us to produce internal goods apropos of a practice

7.  A practice has 3 core virtues

a.  The goods of a practice can style="font-weight: bold;">only be had by subordinating to a
reality based on 3 core virtues:

b. Justice:  what is due

c. Courage:  what is risked

d.  Truthfulness:  what is success, what is short of the mark

e. Therefore:  courage, justice,
and truthfulness are the core virtues of any practice

8.  Practices cannot flourish where the virtues are not valued

9.  A practice is not equivalent to an exercise of skill for itself

10.  Entering a practice yokes one to the practice's past and its
current practitioners' judgments

III.  Institutions

A.  Are concerned with external

B.  Sustaining human community is a practice

1.  Bonded to virtue's exercise

a.  Determinate attitude to social
and political issues

b. It is always within a particular community that we learn to exercise

2.  Political community that
require's virtue's instruction

3.  A practice's survivial depends on the way virtues are
exercised is sustaining the institutions that bear the practice

4.  Certain institutions foster / threaten virtue

5.  Without virtue we can only recognize style="font-style: italic;">external goods

IV.  Virtues are required to define internal good, they aren't
necessary and are possibly negative in getting external goods

V. Conformity to Aristotle

A.  Teleological sans metaphysical

B. Flaws in determinate good (rival goods) is not exclusive to human
error, they can be weighted within the historical / socia-political
constitution of the practice.

C.  Strong match to Aristotle

1.  Depends on Aristotle's
vocabulary:  valuntariness, intellectual vwirtues

2.  Accepts aristotle's definition of pleasure and enjoyment

a.  the activity itself is

b.  external goods as exclusive result is utilitarianism - falls
short of the explanation of why we do things

c.  virtue should be exercised without regard to result

3. Evaluation and explanation are rationally bonded

a.  To identify an action's lack
of virtue always entails an explanation, not just an evaluation

b.  Modern sociologists, not just evaluation forbids " X was
courageous", yet such utterance is critical to Aristotle's explanations

VI. There may exist evil practices

VII.  What is the place of virtue outside of a practice

A.  What would a human lifesans virtue look like
B.  It would be conflict-ridden, too arbitrary
C. We should be able to choose between conficting goods
D.  Without telos, moral utterance is weakened
E.  How do we order virtues?

VIII.  What is live without a telos?

A.  Arbitrary mishmash

B.  Cannot contextualize the virtues

C.  integrity / consistency cannot be defined

IX.  Is there a telos?

Chapter 15:  The  Virtues, the Unity of a Human Life, and the
concept of a Tradition


I. Human Life with telos has 2 difficulties

A.  Social obstacles partition
human life into silos

B.  Philosophical obstacles derive from....

1.  Conceiving behaviour as atomic

2.  When individual is separated from his roles

a. Cannot keep Aristotle's virtue model
b.  Narrative quality of virtue's exercise is lost
c. Virtue is intelligible only with a structure

II.  Human life achieves unity in a narrative

A.  X is doing Y, why?
1.  Can be answered in terms of long or short term time horizons
2. Can be answered in terms of the setting (i.e. X's roles)
3.  We must know primary intentions
B.  Intentions
1.  Must be ordered causally and temporally

2.  Identification of actors' belief is essential

C. We explain all action with a1, a2, B, and role in the history of

D.  Narrative history is the essential means for characterizing
human action

E.  This is against analytic philosohpy

1.  Actions as non-sequitr are

2. How to divide atomic actions? Bake a cake versus break five eggs and
put in a bowl

3. Huans are asked to account for actions

4. Only narrative can make action intelligible

F. Conversation is the form of human endeavour

G.  If human life is narative, tragedy
is the genre

1. Life's roles may be embedded in one

2.  We enter the scene in unclear circumstance

3.  Each of our roles constrains others

H.  Action requires narrative and vice versa

1.  Sartre denies this

2.  A list of vacuous happening devoid of sense

3.  Mersault's narration of style="text-decoration: underline;">The Stranger

I.  There exists a present uninformed by the future

III.  Sense of self in a life-as-narrative

A.  Man is a story-telling animal
B. We enter conscripted into social roles, stories tell us how to act (Schopenhauer)
C.  The self inhabits a character whose unity is appropriate to a character (i.e. belief is equivalent to action)
D.  Requirement of a narrative concept of selfhood
1.  I am the interpreted character of my life as story
2.  I am the subjcet of my own history
3.  Thus i am accountable for the path of my actions
4.  Thus I can demand an explanation from others

E.  Narrative structure and self as such are mutually defining

IV.  The Unity of human life is the unity of a narrative quest
which has 2 features

A.  Conception of telos

B.  A search for something not already characterized

V.  The virtues

A.  viz practices:

1.  Sustain them

2.  Assist in the achievement of their internal goods

B. viz us

1.  Sustain us in a quest for the

2.  Enable us to overcome challenges

3.  Increase our knowledge of the good

4.  The good life for man is the
life spend seeking the good life and its enabling virtues (...and
practicing said virtues as part of the seeking)

5.  A third aspect of the virtues exists, in addition to qua a
practice or qua the good life for a man

6.  Virtues are not only
expressed qua individual but also qua my social roles

VI.  The Concept of a Tradition

A.  Practices always have
histories that are required to understand it

B. Traditions shape practices' histories

C. A tradition is the historically extended argument discussing the
goods of the practice

D.  Traditions thrive by exercise of their goods

E.  Lack of justice, courage, and honesty corrupts traditions and

F.  Powerful virtue is the recognition of one's place in traditions

VII.  Tradition in Practical Reason

A.  Tradition allows us to see
possibilities for the practice

B.  'Special virtue' allows one to act for the good even in the
case of a dilemma

C.  Such dilemmas are not just like the insolubles as seen in
Chapter two

1.  Austen

a. Rival and Incompatible goods XOR tho good life for man
b.  No, we can have the good life but must choose the 'better' good

2.  Unlike tragic good, moral inocmpatibility - here some Good is done
3.  To do better / worse is valuated qua individual and his extant socal roles
p.  What is better / wores is chosen by the character of the intelligible narrative

5.  Our culture (liberal and bureaucratic individualism) changed
the concept of vnirtue and how it degenerated.

Chapter 16:  From the Virtues, to Virtue, and After Virtue

I.  The problem

A.  Virtue's conception changed

1.  List of virtues
2.  Conception of virtues
3.  Virtue itself

B.  2 Concepts that ground virtue were lost

1.  Narrative structure
2.  Concept of a practice

II.  anti-Traditionalists (Sartre, William Gass)

A. Contrast art and life
1.  Exempts art from morality

2.  Prevents art's self-reflective power

B.  death of practices with internal goods

1.  Production moves outside

2.  Household production teches community production

3.  Once outside, we work for institutionalize pleonexia, we
pursue only external goods

C.  Changes to this model

1.  Social capitalization: 
Everything is a means to satisfaction

2  Change of the virtues' focus

III.  Virtue’s Change

A.  Move from the Virtues to Virtue

B.  They remain praised

C.  They expressed life's passions XOR curbed destructive effects
of passions

D. Virtues became conceived as altruism, a fix to egoism, not passions
according to Aristotle

E. Hume thinks that we will be moral due to long-term utility (already
discarded elsewhere)

F.  3 features of 18th c. philo.

1.  Character of particular
virtues is necessary as a means to perpetuate ideas without referent

2.  A new relationship between virtues and rules. Virtues are
characteristics that allow us to follow the rules versus aristotle
where virtues and law were more distinctive

3.  From The Virtues to Virtue

IV. Stoicism flousihed with an emphasis on rule-folowing in teleology’s
absence. Thus one asks “which rules to follow?” Curbing anarchy by
rules, not be the desire to build a common practice.

V.  The Humeans already see society as a place to extract
gratification, nothing more.

VI.  Republicanism (The Reign of Terror) sought to restore the
Classical model of a society of brothers sharing common goals

VII.  Austen’s attempt to resuce

A.  her heroines seek the good via
good marraige

B.  She extends the Classical tradition

1. Preoccupied with counterfeits of the

2.  Self-knowledge is essential

3.  Prasies 'constanc' a means for providing a narrative to a live
versus Kierkergaard's aesthetic life which is merely a series of
unfettered moments

C. anti-Charm, pro-substance

D.  The virtues allow us to overcome challenges (Medieval)

E.  The last representative of classical virtues

VIII.  Public life winds up depending on one virtue: <span
style=“font-weight: bold;”>Justice

Chapter 17: Justice as a
Virtue:  Changing Concepts

I. Justice is fundamental (Aristotle) yet we have battling concepts

A.  Liberal socialist
redistribution to account for political disenfranchisement

B.  No taxes on my stuff

C.  Totally inocmpatible

D. No means to reconcile

II.  Rawls and Nozick parallel (N=>I.A, R=>I.B)

A.  Their claims are based on
fantasises that are insoluble

B.  Neither refers to desert,. Both of them are ignorant of
society pursuing collective goods

C.  They share social premises

1.  Individual sans bonds is primary
2. Acquisition is dirty as on one has things fairly (i.e. acquisition occurs sans history)

III.  A&B in joining Rawls or Nozick with desca appeal to the corrupted Aristotelian or Christian tradition.
IV.  Too many rival concepts of virtue – especially Justice

V.  We cannot achieve moral consensus

VI. SupremeCourt

A.  Dworking:  They exist to
invoke consistent principles

B.  Mac:  It exists to display even-handedness

C. It Exists (politically)

1.  For society's peace

2.  Supress debate of moral conflict

VII.  Patriotism is dead

A . We have no patria

B.  As it doesn't represent moral community, our relationship to
it is unclear at best.  There is no teachable concept of patriotism

VIII.  Modern government

A.  It is at variance with virtue

B.  It praises individualism, acquisitiveness, the market

C.  Justice has no consistent base save its recognition of its

Chapter 18:  Nietzsche or Aristotle:  Trotsky and St. Benedict

I.  Nietzsche or Aristotle

A.  Central premises
1.  Morality and its language is in disorder
2.  Attempts at rational justification for morality fail
B.  Aristotle
1.  Modern morality is Aristotle's vestiges
2.  enlightenment's rejection was that of a whole
C. Nietzsche cannot undermine Aristotle
1.  Canonical Arcistotelianism can be sketched
a.  Reject ubermensch

b. Ubermensch cannot exist as he must be outside all moral
institutions; he cannot exist in Aristotle's world

2.  An escape fantasy

II.  Conclusion

A.  No rational defensible
explanation of individual ponits of view

B.  Aristotle can restore intellect and rationality to our moral
and social attitudes and commitments

III.  Detraction

A.  No proof yet (next book)

B.  Interpretation of  Classical tradition may me overly short

C.  Marxism could surrogate?

IV.  proto-Trotsky; anti-Marx

A.  Marx has a bad rap and never
explains how free individuals enter collectives

B.  Maxism becames Weberian, becoming our Emotivist world

C.  Trotsky sees Marxism as escapist

1. Becomes pessimistic

2.  No political or economic structures to supercede capitalism

V.  We have been besieged and we must guard ourselves through the
Dark Ages

Posted by steven at September 30, 2003 02:18 PM