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Was Eudaimonism Ancient Greek Common Sense?

Guy Schuh
Published Online: 2018-10-16 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2018-0037


I argue that Eudaimonism was not Ancient Greek common sense. After dividing Eudaimonism into Psychological and Normative varieties, I present evidence from Greek literature that the Ancient Greeks did not commonsensically accept Eudaimonism. I then review, and critique, evidence that has been offered for the opposite claim that Eudaimonism was Ancient Greek common sense. This claim is often called on to explain why Ancient Greek philosophers embraced Eudaimonism; the idea is that they did so because it was the ethical common sense of their day. But, according to the case I make in this paper, this explanation cannot stand. Those looking to explain the Eudaimonistic character of Ancient Greek ethical thought must turn to other explanations.

Keywords: Eudaimonism; Popular Greek Morality; Ancient Greek Ethics


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Published Online: 2018-10-16

Citation Information: Apeiron, ISSN (Online) 2156-7093, ISSN (Print) 0003-6390, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2018-0037.

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