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Julie Kim
PHI 100.03
Fall 2012

What is a home?
In this paper, I will discuss what a “home” is and the different levels of meaning it has for people. Specifically, I will discuss how Aristotle and Socrates define the home. Most people think of a place to live when they think of the word, “home”; it is a place where one bathes, sleeps, eats, and spends most of one’s day in the comfort of your own privacy. But what is the difference between a “house” and a “home”? People tend to make more of an emotional connection to the word “home” than they do to the word “house.” Although a house can also be described as a place where one lives, bathes, sleeps, and eats, it is commonly associated with being an actual building structure whereas a “home” can signify more than just a physical place. As traditions of home-life become less and less observed due to constant societal changes, we become increasingly attached towards a nostalgic meaning of home. “Home” is a place where one can find one’s roots, a place that will always be there, loyally waiting for one’s return.

In Politics, Aristotle uses the relationship between the public and private spheres to explain the difference between the household and the city. The best and highest form of human community is the political community—the city. Other types of communities, such as the household and village, are subordinate and inferior because the goal within a household is to preserve and satisfy the daily and basic needs of life, whereas the goal for membership into a city is to live well. Aristotle explains that the city is “unlike the others, it has the full degree of practically every sort of self-sufficiency…[which] remains in being for the sake of living well” (Aristotle, p290). In other words, the city is a political community in which man is able to fulfill his telos—ultimate goal—or end by exercising his nature as a political animal. Telos means the goal or purpose of a thing, its function, or potential. For...
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