1. The assignment is to write an essay of approximately 1500-1800 words on either of the topics provided below. It is due on Monday, Nov 8 at 11 pm. (Please note the change of date from the one originally stated on syllabus.)
2. Papers are to be submitted in PDF format, via Canvas. Please put your own last name in the filename your last name, followed by “-2” (e.g., “Smith-2”). Please also remember to put your name on the first page of the document, and to number the pages.
3. Citations to the text should be given with Bekker numbers. You may provide the citations parenthetically within the body of your essay. As this is a short paper, direct quotations should be kept to a minimum - i.e., used only when truly needed for purpose of making a point. However, please note that you are expected to provide citations for all references to specific statements or references in the text, whether or not you quote from the text directly.
4. Please review the "Guidelines for Essays " [separate document, posted on Canvas] for general instructions and suggestions regarding organization of essay.
1. Explain what Aristotle understands by 'practical wisdom' (phronēsis) and its relation to the moral virtues. How does he distinguish practical wisdom from "art" (technē -- i.e., "technique")? How does he distinguish it from "philosophic" wisdom (sophia)? How is practical wisdom acquired, and what is its scope? In what ways does Aristotle's account of the moral virtues depend on this conception of practical wisdom? (Be aware that the Greek term translated as "practical wisdom" does not include the word "practical" -- so you should not draw any inferences from the presence of that word in the translation. It is in fact the same word which Plato uses in the Phaedo for the sort of wisdom he attributes to philosophers.)
2. Explain what Aristotle means by 'incontinence' (akrasia) and how he accounts for its possibility. How does incontinence differ from 'self-indulgence'? (Note that the latter term is a loose translation of the Greek word 'akolasia', which literally means 'excess' - and which Aristotle associates with absence of sophrosunē, 'temperance'). What makes incontinence a perplexing phenomenon, in Aristotle's view? How does he resolve those perplexities?