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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Aristotle on Ethics, Happiness, and the Good Life

Weekend All-Day Lecture/Seminar

Saturday, October 2, 2021 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET
Code: 1K0131
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$80 - Member
$90 - Non-Member
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Bust of Aristotle by Lysippos 330 BC (Photo: Jastrow/released/Museo nazionale romano di palazzo)

The Nicomachean Ethics is one of the most influential works on human happiness ever written. Its author, Aristotle (384–322 B.C.), gives an account of what happiness is and the conditions under which it can be attained. Michael Gorman, professor of philosophy at The Catholic University of America, examines this seminal treatise on practical wisdom and its lasting influence on Western thinking about living one’s best life ethically.

9:30 to 10:45 a.m.  Happiness and Action

The nature of happiness and how it is related to human action. How do human actions fit together to make up a happy life?

11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Virtues and Vices I

The various ways of being virtuous or excellent—and the ways humans deviate from it.

12:15 to 1:15 p.m. Break

1:15 to 2:30 p.m. Virtues and Vices II

Virtue, and how we attain it. Aristotle’s thoughts on particular virtues.

2:45 to 4 p.m. Happiness, Contemplation, Friendship, and Politics

The connection between happiness, pleasure, and good fortune. Also, a look at its connection to friendship and to politics. What does a happy life look like?

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This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.