Origins of Western Philosophy, exam 2 topics
This is just a list of terms, examples, concepts, etc. that you ought to be familiar with, and some questions you should be able to address. Simply memorizing terms isn't sufficient for understanding the class material, of course, but this might be of some use to you as a start to approaching what you ought to know. This list is in addition to the items mentioned explicitly in the essay questions; I've haven't included those items here, for the sake of saving time and space. Look over the list of possible reading response paper too to get a handle on what we've covered.
Nicomachean Ethics book I
Nicomachean Ethics on virtue
- What is the good (of any thing)?
- What is the highest good?
- Different ways activities can be related to their goals
- Instrumental means to a good vs. constituents of a good
- Criticisms of
as the highest good.
- "Happiness is an activity of the soul expressing complete virtue." What's that mean? Why believe it?
- Classes of goods: external/bodily/psychic, how they relate to happiness.
- Happiness and luck/fortune.
- Why aren't children and animals happy?
- Virtues of character/'moral' virtues vs. virtues of thought/'intellectual' virtues
- How to develop virtues.
- Virtues and pleasure.
- The virtuous/strong-willed/weak-willed/vicious person
- Doctrine of the mean
- why friendship is necessary for happiness
- general characteristics of friendship
- 3 types of friendship
- virtuous person as friend to himself, vicious person as enemy to himself
- friendship and self-interest
- 'Being' is said in many ways—what’s that mean?
- matter and form; criticisms of Plato on their relationship
- existing by nature
- the 4 causes; criticisms of the ‘natural philosophers’/preSocratics
Return to the Origins of Western Philosophy page.
- argument for existence of bodies, for void
- what are atoms
- properties of atoms
- the swerve
- universe has no limits -- why?
- against divine teleology
- no beneficent gods (problem of evil)
- no Olympian gods
- no celestial divinities (sun, earth etc. as gods)
- against biological teleology (a la Aristotle)
- being useful for G-ing v. having G-ing as its purpose
- no designer
- natural selection and explaining away apparent design
- What is the soul/mind
- What is the 'spirit'
- Two arguments for its being corporeal
- Death is annihilation - why?