Political Philosophy and Aristotle

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Chad Phillips
Ecn 327

When looking at the way Aristotle viewed the world and comparing it to the British Tradition you first need an understanding of each. In this paper I want to first discuss what I’ve learned about Aristotle, The British Tradition, and then compare and contrast the two. Aristotle was a disciple of Plato, but they saw society a bit differently. Plato would be considered in this day and age as someone who believes in collectivism. A collectivist believes that the needs of society as a whole are more important than the needs of the individual. On the other hand, Aristotle would have been a supporter of individualism. Individualism refers to the philosophy that an individual should have freedom in his or her economic and political pursuits. In contrast to collectivism, individualism stresses that the interests of the individual should take precedence over the interests of the state. You could say that Aristotle believed in democracy. “The best state could signify one that is conceived according to an abstract ideal; one that is considered best for human communities in general; one that is best for a particular community under given conditions; or one that, while in no sense ideal, is as good as can be attained under the circumstances.” (Levine PG. 108) Aristotle also believed in three domains. The first domain is personal action or “ethos”. This is an idea to live by. Aristotle though that people were simple enough that we could live by one code or ethos. Aristotle called this “The Good Life”. The second domain is household or “oikos”. This is economics or how to manage a household. Aristotle believed that the goal in the household should be different from the goals of the other domains. “In the household, for example, a man should manifest different concerns toward children as their father than toward his wife as her husband, and he should be able to acquire, preserve, improve, and properly utilize property. The responsibilities of the head...
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