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POLSCI 3VV3 Lecture Notes - Meritocracy, Aristocracy, Healthy City

Political Science
Course Code
James Ingram

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Political Theory 3VV3
January 15, 13
Plato and Aristotle
The virtue in which democracy is identified is not equality
o The core value seems to be freedom
Pericles: surprising elements :
o Idea of meritocracy
Pericles the claim of excellence is recognized
Idea that anyone can advance in Athenian society
This is the answer the rejection from the aristocratic ruling
o Aristocracy = rule of the best
People in Athens who would be in charge if it were aristocratic
would be someone like Plato
In democracy = rule of the many, and many are not impressive
o Pp 37.: in democracy anyone can get into your business but because they
are a regime on freedom they allow anyone to do what they want
Plato = democracy is a regime of chaos no one had respect for
the law
Pericles says different: we far from doing just what we
want, we have the highest respect for the laws and
o Pp. 38: Its because of their soldiers they live the lavish life style
o Pp. 40 third sentence: Athenians think about what they are going to do
before they actually do it
Democracy means you have to talk endlessly before you do it
where as in aristocratic societies the head makes the decisions
Philosophy has historically been a ruling of the higher class
because they are the only ones who have the time for it (have the
time to study)
Simplest reason why
o “Our great strength in opinion lies not in deliberation…”
It is only the Aristocratis who have these parties (rich men)
Democratic don’t have philosophical conversations but they
engage in conversations of action
Pg. 20 22
o Illegal unjust actions this is what gave democracy the bad name
(Zemophob case)
Pg. 24 the ship
o Who is the captain and who is the crew?
o People offer information
o Crew= politicians business is politics
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