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By Iakovos Vasiliou

This leading edge learn of Plato's ethics specializes in the idea that of advantage. according to particular readings of the main sought after Platonic dialogues on advantage, it argues that there's a principal but formerly left out conceptual contrast in Plato among the belief of advantage because the ultimate objective of one's activities and the choice of which action-tokens or -types are virtuous. Appreciating the 'aiming/determining distinction' offers specified and collectively constant readings of the main recognized Platonic dialogues on advantage in addition to unique interpretations of critical Platonic questions. not like so much examinations of Plato's ethics, this learn doesn't take as its centrepiece the 'eudaimonist framework', which focusses at the courting among advantage and happiness. in its place Aiming at advantage in Plato argues that the dialogues themselves start with the assumption of the supremacy of advantage, study how that declare will be defended, and handle tips to make sure what constitutes the virtuous motion.

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Extra info for Aiming at Virtue in Plato

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Secondly, the form of SV makes it sound like an instance of knowing that F is G in that I claim that Socrates knows that virtue is supreme. But when we consider what it means to be supreme, we see that virtue’s supremacy is a function of an agent’s relationship to virtue and not an intrinsic property of virtue itself. We ought to strive above all to do virtuous actions and so to be virtuous people (and to avoid vicious actions and becoming vicious people). It is clear, however, that this is not saying something about what virtue itself is or is like, in the sense of saying that all virtuous actions have feature G or that being virtuous is simply a matter of having knowledge of some sort.

It is not as though one could determine what the virtuous action is independently of considerations of life, death, pleasure, pain, or material loss or gain. Socrates is not saying that we should ignore these things absolutely. 1 Certainly factors like pleasure and pain, life and death, wealth, and the welfare of friends and family will be most relevant to such deliberations. We must ignore such things, however, as aims of action when they conflict with what virtue requires. I shall argue that while Socrates believes that one ought always to adhere to SV, it may well be that in some cases material benefits gained or lost is a relevant factor in the determination of what the excellent action is here and now.

I have very little to say a priori about the significance of the distinction without showing its value in particular cases; and I believe it does not always have the same value in all dialogues. Thus I do not always raise the distinction between the inner and outer frames. I sometimes go into considerable detail about the dramatic context and focus on the way interlocutors argue, spending less time on the analysis of arguments themselves. In other places I focus in great detail on an argument, while ignoring elements of the drama and style.

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