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BOOK REVIEWS 557 would reply that this is still another case of confusing a sign with a goal post. We know that moral art is impossible, and it is our opinion which counts. Much the same is true of Socrates' search for a definition in the Euthyphro. Heidegger has shown that such a procedure will not work because unless we know what we are looking for, we cannot learn anything by examining individual cases. The traditional reader will object that Socrates answered this question, or tried to, in the Meno. But Wolz does not discuss the Meno at any length and is unimpressed with the doctrine of recollection as it appears in the Phaedo. Conclusion: Socrates' request for a definition is ironical. The world in which we live does not allow such things, and even if it did, "a definition based on the characteristic common to pious acts... would by itself alone not be a reliable guide for moral action." As for the doctrine that no one willingly or wittingly does evil, the guts of the Socratic Paradox, it not only "offends common sense," it leads to conclusions which are "absurd." The truth is that Socrates never held such a view and believed instead that "the capability of doing evil voluntarily is the condition for the possibility of being moral." By the same token, the theory of forms "which is generally held to be a doctrine seriously advocated by Plato" is another case of irony. It is little wonder that stripped of these doctrines, Plato begins to sound like Heidegger. The question is: What is gained by showing this? Are we not being unfair to both parties when we remake philosopher A in the image of philosopher B? This is not to deny that Wolz makes some good observations about the dramatic structure of the dialogues and raises questions which either a Platonist or a Heideggerian ought to consider. Universal rules or standards deal with general cases: but action, as Aristotle points out (Eth. Nic. 11 lob6, i 141b16-17), always takes place in the realm of the particular. The problem of going from one to the other cannot be solved in a mechanical fashion. An adequate treatment of this problem would have to take up the Socratic notion of techne and the Aristotelian notion ofphronesis. It would, I believe, reveal that the views of Plato and Aristotle are serious philosophical alternatives and that they are markedly different from the view of Heidegger, which is also a serious philosophical alternative. In short, it would reveal that great philosophers have to be read for what they said and not for the way in which they prepared the world for the thought of somebody else. Kenneth Seeskin Northwestern University Michael Woods, translator and commentator. Aristotle's Eudemian Ethics, Books I, II, VIII. Clarendon Aristotle Series, vol. 7. New York: Clarendon Press; Oxford University Press, 1982. Pp. xii + z34. $1e.95 (paper). Woods's volume is the latest in the Clarendon Aristotle Series, begun in 1962 with Richard Robinson's Aristotle's Politics, Books III and IV. In his own contribution to the Series, Aristotle's Categories and De lnterpretatione (1963), J. L. Ackrill, General 558 JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY 21:4 OCT 198 3 Editor, explained the rationale for new translations: "The existing English versions are not well suited to the needs of... the serious student of philosophy who does not read Greek... they are not sufficiently literal, and they do not attempt to preserve consistency in the rendering of key terms." At times the effort to stay close to the text produces opaqueness rather than clarity, e.g., Woods's rendering of 2.7. t 223a28 as "we first consider accordance with desire," which at first reads as if something had been left out (in contrast to Rackham 's "first we must consider conformity with desire" in The Loeb Classical Library, 1935). But in many other places, fidelity to the text actually provides greater clarity, if not elegance. Consider first J. Solomon's version of 2. t. t219b37-41 in the Oxford University Press' The Works of Aristotle, vol. 9 (t915)i We also neglect any other part of...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1538-4586
Print ISSN
0022-5053
Pages
pp. 557-559
Launched on MUSE
2008-01-01
Open Access
No
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