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Ethical and political particularism in Aristotle

Grant number: 14/10098-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): November 01, 2014
Effective date (End): October 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Philosophy - Ethics
Cooperation agreement: Coordination of Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES)
Principal researcher:Luiz Henrique Lopes dos Santos
Grantee:Silvia Feola Gomes de Almeida
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil

Abstract

Aristotle's ethical theory contains a sort of particularism that does not deny the universality of good, since there is a supreme good that every men should search for, in their every action. However, although there is a universal good, his ethical theory is not capable of giving the moral agent a set of pratical rules that are able to embrace all the possible, many and unpredictable, particular circunstances, characteristics of the contingente world we live in. Thereby, the human function consists in doing the proper thing when it comes to apply the general moral rule to the multiples specific situations in which we act. And what allows a man to do so is precisely contained in his own nature: reason, or language, which makes him different from other animals, as the only one that is able to apprehend the concepts of good and justice. The good that every man should live by is partly expressed by the city legislation, as man is by nature a political animal. Hence, ethics needs politics to be completly fulfilled, wich means that they cannot be separated. Thus, we can inquire if and in which measure, in Aristotle's theory, the relation between universalism and particularism, that is presente in the ethics, can be transposed to the politics, and if this relation is somehow grounded in reality. The purpose of this project is to try to find some answers to these questions. (AU)

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