Aristotle Analysis

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An examination of Aristotle’s critique of the different claims to rule reveals that because of our nature as political animals, living the good life is most practicable under the regime of the polity. Therefore, by separating the utopian theory of a regime and the practicable application, Aristotle shows that we can live in a state where our virtue contributes to the being of the city, and in the process, bring forth the ultimate goal of the city: achieving happiness through the good life.
By laying out the case for a ruling oligarchy, Aristotle claims the wealthy regard justice in strictly monetary terms, saying, “[oligarchs] think if they are superior in one point, for example in wealth, they are superior in all” (Aristotle 103). In other
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In this utopian state, the members that rule are “absolutely the best” (Aristotle 150) possible citizens. Giving out positions of government based on merit alone is theoretically the most just, but Aristotle gives the same criteria to the “well-born” and kingship. He states that kingship is necessary when “a single individual among the ordinary people, is of merit so outstanding as to surpass that of all the rest” (Aristotle 131). If the best regime is the best for all, then how does one define the best of the best when many are of outstanding merit? We can begin to see the issues with abstraction. Where are these best persons located? Further, at what point does the best person in an aristocracy usurp the rest and become a candidate for kingship if they all possess outstanding merit? Also, Aristotle states that the best constitution is “the type in which there is a single man, or a whole family, or a number of people, surpassing all others in goodness” (Aristotle 132). By muddying the waters here, Aristotle removes the ability to apply this sort of regime in any real-world context. How is the “best rule for all” possible if there are three different ways of building that city? If aristocracy is reduced to “the best rule” and can comprise of various styles of a regime, it is practically impossible to implement because it lacks true…show more content…
In the ideal polity, the middle class is the binding glue of moderation among the excess (‘the very rich’) and the defect (‘the very poor’). It is essential to understand that by applying his ethics to his politics, Aristotle is claiming that we can find the mean between the god-like virtue of his perfect state through the more practical application of moderation. True, the majority of men who rule in a polity will not be of the most excellence, but they will be the second-best excellence, which is those in possession of much moderation. By acting as a voice of reason amidst the excessive and defective, the middle can serve as a barrier against those who would overstep the mean, and therefore act against virtue. This mean of moderation in cities offers the best chance for the most people to live the good life, as Aristotle reaffirms when he says, “[in cities] moderation and the mean are always best” (Aristotle
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