ARISTOTLE’S ACCOUNT OF PLEASURE READING: Aristotle, Book VII esp. Chaps, 11-14 and BOOK X, esp Chps. 1 – 5 Nicomachean Ethics.. Assignment Context: This assignment presupposes knowledge of Aristotle?s account of Eudaimonia (the human good / happiness) in Books I and X of Aristotle Nicomachean Ethics. Be sure to listen to the first few episodes of lectures on Aristotle before completing your essay.

write a carefully constructed critical exposition of Aristotle’s account of “pleasure”. As with your first assignment, the task of critical exegesis is two-fold: First, to explain the positions presented and to give an account of Aristotle’s arguments for or against those positions. Second, you are expected to critically evaluate those arguments. You should devote roughly an equal amount of space to each task. You may organize your paper in whatever way seems best: you may do the explication first and then follow with criticism, or you may combine the two as you go along. Whatever your chosen style, remember that it is important to demonstrate that you understand a point before you attack or support it.

Keep in mind that the key to a well-written paper is a well-written INTRODUCTORY PARAGRAPH. A well-written introduction serves two purposes: 1) it stands alone as an account of the text in your own words, and 2) it serves as an introduction to your own paper by outlining the structure and organization of your paper. Strive for a strong opening.

Somewhere in the body of your paper you should tackle general questions such as the following: Explication: (i) With was main problem regarding pleasure is Aristotle concerned? (ii) What are the standard opposing views of pleasure? (iii) In what way(s) are they opposed? (iv) What claims does Aristotle attack and on what grounds? (v) Is pleasure, according to Aristotle, the chief good? If so, how does it relate to eudaimonia? If not, how does it relate to eudaimonia? (vi) Is pleasure good according to Aristotle. If not, why not? If so, is it an activity, among others, that humans pursue for its own sake? (vii) How, if at all, is pleasure related to eudaimonia? Evaluation (i) How well does Aristotle set out each side of the issue? (ii) How adequate and fair is Aristotle’s account of the alternative positions? Have any key/persuasive arguments in support of the standard views of pleasure been overlooked by Aristotle? Are there any defects in his conception of the issues? (iii) Are there any problems or tensions associated with Aristotle’s own account of pleasure? (iv) Does Aristotle provide the reader with persuasive and substantial grounds for accepting his conclusion? Are the arguments valid, sound, undeniable? (v) Are you convinced of anything because of these arguments? Explain why or why not. Do you, in the end, agree or disagree with Aristotle? Be sure to provide an argument for your assessment.

You should strive for a clear and simple writing style. In general, try to use short and straightforward sentences rather than long or elaborate sentences. Also, remember that any evaluative remarks (for example claims that a position is strong or weak, well-founded, or not) should be backed by a brief explanation of why you think so. Your explanation should be a carefully constructed argument, designed, to persuade your reader.

Your critical summary should be about 1100-1250 words in length, preferably typed double-spaced (normal font & margins).

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