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The Virtues of Thought

This is half day seminar on the Book VI of the Nicomachean Ethics led by Patricio A. Fernandez (UC Santa Barbara)

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The Virtues of Thought
The Virtues of Thought

Time & Location

Jan 28, 2023, 12:00 PM – 7:00 PM PST

Zephyr Institute, 560 College Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94306, USA

About the Event

For Aristotle, human flourishing does not only consist in the exercise of virtues of character, such as courage or justice. Even more fundamentally, it consists in the exercise of virtues of the intellect—virtues of thought. Aristotle is the first philosopher who clearly distinguished two different uses of reason, theoretical and practical, each with its own distinctive forms of excellence. Book VI of the Nicomachean Ethics contains Aristotle’s careful exposition of the intellectual virtues and, in particular, theoretical and practical wisdom. We will explore Aristotle’s sophisticated and still enormously influential picture of human thinking and its bearing on action by reading and discussing in detail passages from that book.

Main reading: Nicomachean Ethics, Book VI

Suggested background reading: 

Book I, chapters 1, 2, 7, 13

Book II, chapter 1

Book III, chapters 2, 3

Books will be provided to participants (please share a kindle email address or a mailing address to


12 -12:45 Lunch

12:45-2:15PM Session 1

15 min Break

2:30-4:00PM Session 2

15 min Break

4:15-5:30PM Session 3

5:30 Dinner


Patricio A. Fernandez is associate professor of philosophy at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a 2022-23 fellow at the Stanford Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences.

Lunch and dinner will be provided. Please RSVP by January 25th 2023.

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