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Document Details :
Title: Een apologeet van de woede?
Subtitle: Aristoteles over een gevoel
Author(s): OPSOMER, Jan
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Filosofie
Volume: 77 Issue: 4 Date: 2015
Aristotle examines emotions in different works and from different perspectives. Ontologically, they are categorized as passing qualitative states of the soul. Yet they have both a bodily and a psychological (mental) aspect. While a proper definition of any emotion would need to render both aspects, in his Rhetoric Aristotle merely offers nominal definitions of emotions in general and of single emotions. He produces a sophisticated analysis of anger, which he defines as a response to a perceived slight. The angry person seeks revenge, which consists in his or her regaining his or her superiority. In order to achieve this, it is necessary that the victim, that is the person responsible for the earlier slight, recognizes that she or he is made to suffer the revenge of the angry person. Anger is therefore accompanied by pain and pleasure: pain because of the perceived slight, pleasure because of the hope for revenge. Anger is morally neutral, but there are good and bad ways of being angry.