Connection Between Ethics and Poetics in Aristoteles


  • Ismet Tekerek Ph.D., Aegean University, Izmir.



Poetics, ethics, ethos, aesthetics, politics, art, theatre, action, character, virtue, tragedia, imitation, catharsis, Antigone, Prometheus.


Editorial InformationSearch Home Journal Archive Vol.1,no.1,2012,Abstract10

Connection Between Ethics and Poetics in Aristoteles





Ph.D., Aegean University, Izmir.






Action and character are two major concepts which called human into being in the past and also for the moment and will render human exist in the future. If action is being executed through the preference of free will of a conscious and prudent person then character of that person can be spoken. Action, character and preference of free will have an important position at the ethical and aesthetical views of Aristotle. He presents his views on the function of action, character and tragedia at his work Poetics in which he composed theatre aesthetics of the era by analysing tragedias originated from rituals and mythology and which are played for thousands of people. According to his views, sciences can be classified as practical and theoretical. Since practical sciences deal with human-character which is the source of action, theatre can be evaluated as practical art by following his views on tragedia and examples. Because tragedia is the imitation of an action which is experienced by a character who is better than the average, and this action orients the person to the good through catharsis which it creates. Aeschylus’ “Prometheus Bound” and Sophocles’ “Antigone”, which are among the most important and mature tragedias, are two examples projecting Aristotle’s ideas on action, character, free will, individual preference and average ethics. Only a tragic hero who executes his action by using his individual preference with his free will and carries out this action coherently can create catharsis on the audience. The audience watchs the conflict between equal powers developed by the tragedia, gets into catharsis; and the calmness after catharsis serves the view of good-wise citizen which is the target of Atistotle’s total views. Thinking once more on this dialectical relation between action, character, free will and individual preference which are also the basis of Aristotle’s philosophy is important in terms of interrogating the human and his values, of enriching the human.





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