The Eudaimon as the Basic Concept of the Nicomachean Ethics, Book I
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My thesis demands one premise; a premise that can, and should, be questioned, but if we accept the given structure of the EN, my assumption is natural. Book I acts as an introduction to the remaining books; it is in Book I that Aristotle determines the direction and emphasis of his ethical study. This in a sense is also a thesis, though a minor one, and will be supported accordingly through the argument for my major thesis: The focus of Book I, and hence the EN, is the eudaimon, and not as commonly read, eudaimonia. My argument will follow the structure of Book I, though only touching the passages relevant to my thesis, e.g., chapters 2,4, and 7. I must also work with contemporary literature on the subject. Since contemporary philosophers criticize one another so well, I will use their arguments to show how they misplace the focus of Book I and how my proposed shift of focus survives their criticism. Necessary introductory discussions will be of, one, translations of eudaimonia and the justification for leaving it in its transliterated form, and two, definitions of inclusive and dominant interpretations of eudaimonia.