Virtue Ethics

Unlike Utilitarianism and Deontology which consider how to evaluate the rightness or wrongness of particular actions, virtue theory considers how actions contribute to shaping character. The focus in virtue theory is, how to become a good person and develop a virtuous character. Aristotle, an ancient philosopher who is a proponent of virtue theory, says that it takes practice, and that our practice should be guided by the called “the doctrine of the mean.”

Contemporary virtue theorists build on Aristotle’s ideas, but also introduce the importance of social virtues and the value of community in shaping character.

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." -- Aristotle