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Agency and Responsibility in Aristotle’s Eudemian Ethics

In: Phronesis
Author: Jozef Müller1
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  • 1 Department of Philosophy, University of California, Riverside, hmnss Building, Room 1604, 900 University Avenue, Riverside, ca 92521, USA
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I argue that Aristotle’s account of voluntary action focuses on the conditions under which one is the efficient cause of one’s actions qua individual. I also argue that Aristotle’s conception of the efficient cause of an action brings in certain normative features which support evaluative judgments and the practice of praise and blame even in the case of non-rational animals. In the case of rational agents, this practice involves a further normative layer: they can be praised or blamed not only for acting in a certain way, but also for being, and having become, individuals of a certain sort.

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