The Impact Of Freedom On Ancient Greece And Modern America

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Freedom is an ambiguous term, heavily dependent on the context of time and/or place which, therefore, means that political scientists are not blessed with a universal definition of freedom to apply. Instead, they must deduct whether a society is ‘free’ based on a combination of identifying some general characteristics, as well as considering constraints that may arise from that society’s place in time or geographic location. Thus, the following comparison of freedom in Ancient Greece and Modern America will consist of an identification of similar and differing characteristics of the two, as well as an application of a ‘historical lens’ that accounts for constraints. Oxford Dictionary defines freedom as “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance…” and “…the absence of subjection to foreign domination/despotic government”. This definition, along with certain characteristics from the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights such as “faith in human rights” and “universal respect for and observance of all fundamental freedoms...” are prime examples of general characteristics that political scientists attempt to identify. Considering a society’s place in time and geographic location is equally important, however. For instance, in order to accurately compare freedom in China and the United States, one must consider the differences in geographical location of the two and how these differences serve as constraints. Failing to do so may result in
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