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date: 05 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter foregrounds aspects of Plato’s thinking about virtue that may be useful for contemporary virtue ethicists. First, Plato presents Socrates’ self-knowledge as a kind of ‘moral epistemic humility,’ and this notion may be important for theories that set a high bar for moral knowledge. Second, Plato provides various models—with wisdom at the forefront—for configuring the relationship amongst the virtues. Third, Plato’s view that virtue is sufficient for happiness, though external goods contribute to one’s level of happiness, represents an underexplored option in contemporary work. Fourth, very few scholars have drawn from Plato’s rich account of the moral psychology of eros, or love, in the development and maintenance of the proper attitude toward virtue. Finally, Plato’s political thought, in which the state’s central task is tend to the virtue and happiness of its citizens, may provide a rich resource for those interested in moral education and virtue politics.

Keywords: Plato, virtue, happiness, virtue ethics, wisdom

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