Gabriel Richardson Lear

April 12-13, 2013: Gabriel Richardson Lear-- Lecture + Seminar 

April 12, 4:00-6:00 p.m.: Lecture, "Plato on Pretending to Live Well," Alumnae Hall, 194-200 Meeting Street, Crystal Room; reception to follow.

  • Much of Plato's ethics is a call to wake up from the illusion that we are living well.  Richardson Lear will discuss how, in the Republic, he develops his complex analysis of poetic mimesis in order to illuminate the structure of this illusion and what, by contrast, he thinks a genuinely good life is like.

April 13, 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.: Seminar, "Aristotle on Happiness, Tragedy, and the Complete Life," Alumnae Hall, 194-200 Meeting Street, Crystal Room; breakfast available at 9:30.

In the Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle claims that we need to live virtuously for "a complete length of time" in order to be happy.  How long is that?  Richardson Lear will explain why the need for a certain length of time is difficult to square with other aspects of Aristotle's theory of happiness and will suggest that the theory of tragedy he develops in the Poetics can help us to understand his point.

Gabriel Richardson Lear is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Chicago, where she works on ancient Greek and Roman philosophy.

Lear published Happy Lives and the Highest Good: Aristotle’s "Nicomachean Ethics" (2004), and has published articles in Blackwell’s Companion to Aristotle’s "Ethics" (2005) and Plato’s "Symposium": Issues in Interpretation and Reception (2007).