Aristotle on the heterogeneity of pleasure

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3 Scopus citations


In Nicomachean Ethics 10.5, Aristotle gives a series of arguments for the claim that pleasures differ from one another in kind in accordance with the differences in kind among the activities they arise in connection with. This chapter develops an interpretation of these arguments based on an interpretation of Aristotle’s theory of pleasure (which the author has defended elsewhere) according to which pleasure is the perfection of perfect activity. Aristotle’s phenomenology of pleasure is reconstructed, with the argument that while he denies that all pleasures share any particular phenomenal element, he does think that all pleasures have a common phenomenal structure. Finally, the chapter argues that Aristotle’s view that pleasures differ in kind does not imply that they cannot be compared in pleasantness.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPleasure
Subtitle of host publicationA History
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9780190225100
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018


  • Aristotle
  • Heterogeneity problem
  • Nicomachean ethics
  • Phenomenology of pleasure
  • Pleasure


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