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Economics a commodity or service that satisfies a human need



in ethics and philosophy, that which includes definite positive meaning. In philosophy the question of good was posed in attempts to explain the meaning of existence and human life and was treated as the problem of the greatest good (summum bonum in Latin, a term introduced by Aristotle); this greatest good determined the relative value of all other goods. The Greek philosophers viewed the greatest good as happiness— “eudaemonia” —the exact meaning of which was defined in various ways by representatives of different schools. For example, the Cyrenaics and Epicurus defined it as pleasure, the Cynics as abstention from passion, and Aristotle and the Stoics as virtue (in the sense of the supremacy of the higher and more rational forms of nature over the lower). Plato considered “the good” to be “the one” which is the basis of all existence. Aristotle distinguished three kinds of good: corporeal (health, strength), external (wealth, honor, glory), and spiritual (intelligence, moral virtue). In the Middle Ages, scholasticism attempted to rework the ideas of the ancient philosophers in terms of the principles of Christian theism. The result was the identification of the greatest good with god, the source of all good and the ultimate goal of human aspiration.

New European philosophy emphasized the role of the subject in determining any sort of good. T. Hobbes and B. Spinoza said that the good is that for which man is striving, that which he needs. Another development which was characteristic of new European ethics was the utilitarian interpretation of good, which reduces it to the idea of usefulness. Kant distinguished the supreme good from the absolute good. The former is good will and moral virtue; and latter requires that virtue be combined with happiness. Thereafter the concept of the good gradually lost its significance and, from the middle of the 19th century was replaced by the concept of value.

In the narrower and specifically ethical sense of the word, the concept of good is opposite to that of evil.


Material goods Economists consider material goods from two different points of view: in terms of their usefulness (their capacity for satisfying a particular human need) and in terms of how much man has contributed to their production. Accordingly, there are two kinds of value—use value and exchange value. Material goods are usually considered to include consumer goods (services as well as wares) which satisfy a great variety of human needs.


References in periodicals archive ?
Looking slightly rumpled, with his greying hair short and tousled, he good-humouredly analyses his life and career as one of the finest American actors of his generation.
And it is still presided over by the same auvergnoise proprietrix who good-humouredly put up with our demands for "une pour la rue" when she wanted to shut up shop and go home.
Lawrence has difficulty in finding a typist willing to complete this particular task, and must settle, good-humouredly, for the combined and not thoroughly professional efforts of his friends.
The full force of the Leinster House ushers was brought in to deal with the drama and the exodus from all party offices mingled good-humouredly in the rain outside for about 25 minutes.
C-wing group manager, Keith Lowe, good-humouredly outlined some of the more ghoulish features.
The buzz of conversation is broken by the occasional laugh as some of the older women good-humouredly poke fun at each other.
I've never been in the Crucible before and haven't even seen the film with Daniel Day Lewis, who plays John Proctor,'' says Storry, who good-humouredly recalls that infamous time he last met Day Lewis as that ``shoulder part''.