The Impossible Quest For The Ideal Society

1645 Words Sep 23rd, 2016 7 Pages
Maxx Marian
Dr. Simpson
HON 171
23 September 2016
The Impossible Quest for the Ideal Society The idea of the ideal society is one that has been debated for centuries. Many theories have been conjured up by intellectuals, all with differing divisions of power, wealth, and labor. Two of these competing theories are those presented in Plato’s The Republic and Aristotle’s Politics. While they both present a wide range of views on many issues, this paper will only focus on two issues that go hand-in-hand: slavery’s role in society, and the divisions of property and power amongst the classes. Aristotle makes a better case for the selection of slaves from inside his society, rather than outside it, and Plato makes a more convincing argument for the public allocation of power and property, as opposed to the individual allocation favored by Aristotle, but neither has arrived at a truly perfect society. One of the largest issues facing any society is that of labor, specifically those tasks that are most undesirable, involving lots of physical work. Most societies, at least those before the 19th century, have turned to slavery to solve this problem: if the general population, especially those in the middle and upper classes, would prefer not to engage in such tasks, then it should be delegated to someone who is being forced to perform whatever tasks are assigned, or their basic needs will not be met. Aristotle agrees with these societies in that slaves should perform certain tasks,…

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