Aristotle on Political Community

by David J. Riesbeck
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Publication Date: August 11, 2016

ISBN: 9781316718933

Binding: Kobo eBook

Availability: eBook

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Aristotle's claims that 'man is a political animal' and that political community 'exists for the sake of living well' have frequently been celebrated by thinkers of divergent political persuasions. The details of his political philosophy, however, have often been regarded as outmoded, contradictory, or pernicious. This book takes on the major problems that arise in attempting to understand how the central pieces of Aristotle's political thought fit together: can a conception of politics that seems fundamentally inclusive and egalitarian be reconciled with a vision of justice that seems uncompromisingly hierarchical and authoritarian? Riesbeck argues that Aristotle's ideas about the distinctive nature and value of political community, political authority, and political participation are coherent and consistent with his aristocratic standards of justice. The result is a theory that, while not free of problems, remains a potentially fruitful resource for contemporary thinking about the persistent problems of political life.