Descartes on Human Nature and the Human Good

  • Lisa Shapiro
Part of the The New Synthese Historical Library book series (SYNL, volume 65)


Lisa Shapiro considers whether Descartes is what she calls a “structural eudaimonist,” that is, one who ties the human good to human nature. She argues that even though Descartes subscribes to a virtue ethics, his dualism precludes his being a structural eudaimonist. While he offers an account of the good of the human mind as the pursuit of knowledge, and an account of the good of the human body, derived from the Stoic notion of oikeiosis, it is not clear how these two strands come together to form an account of the human good proper to the union of mind and body.


Human Nature Function Argument Human Good Bodily Health Practical Judgment 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Simon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

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