Levels of Argument: A Comparative Study of Plato's Republic and Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics

2015.11.25 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Dominic Scott, Levels of Argument: A Comparative Study of Plato's Republic and Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics, Oxford University
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2015.11.25 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Dominic Scott, Levels of Argument: A Comparative Study of Plato's Republic and Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics, Oxford University Press, 2015, 235pp., $70.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199249640. Reviewed by Samuel H. Baker, University of South Alabama According to Aristotle, the end of theoretical philosophy is knowing truth, while the end of practical philosophy is "not knowing but acting" (Nicomachean Ethics I 3, 1095a5-6). Consequently, the subject matter of theoretical and practical philosophy may very well overlap. In such cases, the theoretical philosopher will consider the subject with a view to comprehending it as thoroughly as possible, while the practical philosopher will consider it just as is useful for acting well. To illustrate this point, Aristotle uses a case of productive expertise: "the carpenter and the geometer inquire about the right angle differently -- the former insofar as it will help his. . .

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