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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
On Community of Studies
By Aristotle (384–322 B.C.)
 
From ‘The Politics,’ Book 8

NO one, therefore, can doubt that the legislator ought principally to attend to the education of youth. For in cities where this is neglected, the politics are injured. For every State ought to be governed according to its nature; since the appropriate manners of each polity usually preserve the polity, and establish it from the beginning. Thus, appropriate democratic manners preserve and establish a democracy, and oligarchic an oligarchy. Always, however, the best manners are the cause of the best polity. Further still, in all professions and arts, there are some things which ought previously to be learnt, and to which it is requisite to be previously accustomed, in order to the performance of their several works; so that it is evident that it is also necessary in the practice of virtue.  1
  Since, however, there is one purpose to every city, it is evident that the education must necessarily be one and the same in all cities; and that the attention paid to this should be common. At the same time, also, no one ought to think that any person takes care of the education of his children separately, and privately teaches them that particular discipline which appears to him to be proper. But it is necessary that the studies of the public should be common. At the same time, also, no one ought to think that any citizen belongs to him in particular, but that all the citizens belong to the city; for each individual is a part of the city. The care and attention, however, which are paid to each of the parts, naturally look to the care and attention of the whole. And for this, some one may praise the Lacedæmonians; for they pay very great attention to their children, and this in common. It is evident, therefore, that laws should be established concerning education, and that it should be made common.  2
 
 
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