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Politics

Aristotle

Book Overview: 

The Politics, by the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle, is one of the most influential texts in political philosophy. In it, Aristotle explores the role that the political community should play in developing the virtue of its citizens. One of his central ideas is that “Man is a political animal,” meaning that people can only become virtuous by active participation in the political community. Aristotle also criticizes his teacher Plato, classifies and evaluates six different types of constitutions and political institutions, and describes his vision of the ideal state. Aristotle’s views on women and slavery are unenlightened by today’s standards, but his work remains enduring and relevant to this day.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Besides, a man may live moderately and miserably at the same time; he had therefore better have proposed, that they should live both moderately and liberally; for unless these two conspire, luxury will come in on the one hand, or wretchedness on the other, since these two modes of living are the only ones applicable to the employment of our substance; for we cannot say with respect to a man's fortune, that he is mild or courageous, but we may say that he is prudent and liberal, which are the only qualities connected therewith.

It is also absurd to render property equal, and not to provide for the increasing number of the citizens; but to leave that circumstance uncertain, as if it would regulate itself according to the number of women who [1265b] should happen to be childless, let that be what it would because this seems to take place in other cities; but the case would not be the same in such a state which he proposes and those which now actually unite; for i. . . Read More

Community Reviews

An interesting treatise, but I can see why only those interested in political theory return to it.

I especially enjoy Aristotle's works, as he is easy to read and his philosophy is beautifully stractured. In this book, some of the foundamental ideas of politics are presented, again with an ease so everyone could understand them and see how he reached his conclusion by a logical order.

شرح في هذا الكتاب أرسطو كل تصوّرُه عن الدولة و مكان الفرد: المواطن/ العبد/ المرأة / الفلاح/ الأجانب فيها،
لا يبدو الكتاب مُغرياً و مُحفزاً للقراءة. لكنه عهد قطعناه على أنفسنا -بنادي كتاب الفلسفة السياسية- أن نقرأ كامل الكتاب -ولو بدا مملاً ثقيلاً- و نتناقش حوله على مدى الخمسة الجلسات الماضية، ليأ...more

In Politics, Aristotle theorized that in a perfect world, a monarchy would be a benevolent dictatorship, an aristocracy would be rule by the virtuous and democracy would be rule by the people. But because of human frailty, monarchy actually becomes tyranny, aristocracy actually becomes oligarchy...more

Want a friendly tip?

When you’re finished browsing through the latest headlines screaming blue murder over political dirty double dealings, browse through THIS!

It’ll open the windows of your mind and let in some fresh air!

Meet the vigorous, affable philosopher Aristotle, as he jostles through the...more

I personally find it tough to do any sort of a review on the classics, as just about everything that can be said about a 2400 year old treatise has probably been said. However, like scripture, everyone has their own interpretation of these kinds of documents from antiquity. The interpretations, l...more

Despite the warnings and protests that I have received from goodreads friends about reading Aristotle's politics into our current political situations and vice versa, I will attempt to do just that in this review - unapologetically. Obviously, I am well aware that Aristotle lived over 2300 years...more

Os especialistas e entendidos no assunto dizem que Aristóteles é uma das figuras intelectuais mais importantes de todos os tempos — que ele é, juntamente com Platão, um dos fundadores da razão ocidental.

Dizem os especialistas também que a “Política”, do mesmo Aristóteles, é um dos livros mais imp...more

“Man is a political animal.”-The perfect springboard for Aristotle's political tome.

The book is largely divided, though not perfectly sectioned off, into sections concerning his political philosophy and analysis. His philosophy was a little difficult to ascertain. His idea of a citizen is severe...more

This is quite a turn away from the optimistic "we can figure it all out" tone of the Nicomachean Ethics. In trying to confront both what a state is and how it functions, he creates this weird/insidious master/slave hierarchy, expanding it to encompass children, women, basically anyone who isn't a...more

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