Aristotle the Politics Term Paper

  • Length: 5 pages
  • Subject: Government
  • Type: Term Paper
  • Paper: #57257089

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Aristotle's Politics

According to Aristotle, the basic principle of democracy freedom. Democracy is a political system where in there is an establishment of a partnership amid the demos or the common people which in turn makes out how would the power be distributed and authority be delegated within a city. Thus, democracy, by Aristotle, is a type of freedom. This freedom has two aspects according to Aristotle, the first "being ruled and ruling in turn," while the other aspect involves the freedom of the citizens to live as they please. The first aspect is regarded as "law." Nevertheless, both these aspects of freedom, or the essentiality of democracy are essential for a true democracy to operate and function smoothly ensuring freedom. In this paper, we are going to argue that both these types of freedom or liberties as explained by Aristotle are essential for a true democracy and that without any one aspect of freedom, the democracy would not be a political system.

Aristotle discussed many forms of democracies in his Politics and has given a range of political system. However, he warns against a political system where there is no law. Such a political system would not be termed as democracy. Even he considers establishment of monarch as a system of democracy, but in the sense that "many have authority not as individuals but all together." This authority is the authority that comes by mandate, that is by majority, but if viewed in a different sense, and if not considered a monarchy as a democratic political system because it does not support authority of the majority over the law, then in that case a "democracy of this sort is not a political system. For where the laws do not rule there is no political system."

In view of Aristotle a man is free not because he is a part of a free society, but because he is a person that has certain characteristics that let him to lead a responsible and happy life. According to Aristotle, these characteristics are the result of an extended course of action of necessary guidance. However, such an obligation can only be acceptable in case of the creation of an individual who is both happy and free, where, hence, the possibility is restricted by this aim. For the reason that Aristotle eventually acknowledged the necessarily of education for every man as given by Socrates, he argues further, that the education just makes us realize what we really wants from life and from society. Education, then thus liberates us from our ignorance and unreasonability and lead us towards redefining what and ourselves we really are, and explains why Aristotle wrote that the "law's laying down of what is decent is not oppressive" (Aristotle, 1180a24). For the reason that the freedom from the inner force is rather significant than freedom from the outside force that may in turn leads to an empire of the will, it is believed that citizens can also be forced and compelled to be free. However, Aristotle also is doubtful and warns that the city cannot built itself a fine political system in advance and that any system, except the system that speaks of complete control of one man over the majority, can turn up being better for the city. There is thus no rule that any one political system would be the best and there is no rule that every one of the political systems would work best in every situation. It is thus the virtues and forces of free people that make a system a success or failure.

As a consequence, Aristotle gives that at times it is appropriate to have a system of kingdom although he supposes that in order to have "law rule is to be chosen in preference to having one of the citizens do so." Hence, what seems all the more appropriate for Aristotle is the system which falls in the middle of democracy and aristocracy, and that is polity. This system of politics ensures two things, one that is the ruling and be rules while at the same time it also ensures that every person lives, as he or she desires in a city. How this happens. First let us consider that the first aspect is that of the formation of a system that flows both ways vertically, from upward to down…

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