Aristotle's PoliticsLiving Well and Living Together

Aristotle's PoliticsLiving Well and Living Together

Eugene Garver

Print publication date: 2013

ISBN: 9780226284026

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

Abstract

“Man is a political animal,” Aristotle asserts near the beginning of the Politics. In this reading of one of the foundational texts of political philosophy, this book traces the surprising implications of Aristotle's claim and explores the treatise's relevance to ongoing political concerns. Often dismissed as overly grounded in Aristotle's specific moment in time, the Politics in fact challenges contemporary understandings of human action and allows us to better see ourselves today. Close examination of Aristotle's treatise, the book finds, reveals a significant, practical role for philosophy to play in politics. Philosophers present arguments about issues—such as the right and the good, justice and modes of governance, the relation between the good person and the good citizen, and the character of a good life—that politicians must then make appealing to their fellow citizens. This book yields new ways of thinking about ethics and politics, both ancient and modern.