Educational Philosophy and Theory 45 (5):509-515 (2013)

Nel Noddings claims that there is an important normative element in happiness. For support, she points to the Aristotelian idea of the eudaimonic life, a concept that is often translated into English as ‘the happy life’. However, in light of the wide divergence between the Aristotelian view of eudaimonia as a life of virtuous activity and most contemporary psychologists’ and lay people’s view of happiness as subjective wellbeing, the authors of this article believe that Noddings’s merging of the two has several shortcomings. Aside from ambiguity and confusion, it encourages us to deny that, given the human condition, we must sometimes choose between happiness as pursuit of positive emotion and personal satisfaction and happiness as pursuit of the common good and the virtuous life.
Keywords Aristotle  subjective wellbeing  Noddings  eudaimonia  happiness
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DOI 10.1111/j.1469-5812.2012.00856.x
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Utilitarianism.John Stuart Mill - 1863 - Cleveland: Cambridge University Press.
Nicomachean Ethics.Martin Aristotle & Ostwald - 1962 - Hackett Publishing Company.
Happiness and Education.Nel Noddings - 2003 - Cambridge University Press.

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