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Lecture 4

POLSCI 3VV3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Res Publica

Political Science
Course Code
James Ingram

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-Echos are important for Aristotle
-The virtue of of the citizen differs in different states, and therefore cannot always be the
same as that of the good man
-Even in the perfect state, though all are good citizens, they are not necessarily good
-Plato thought democracy was a democracy in terms of the ship, you need a navigator
-Each citizens has different functions, there is a common definition applicable to each
human, they all have a common object which is safe in navigation.
-The citizens differ among themselves, and therefore cannot all have the same virtue
-The good ruler is the good man
-They are all interested in the welfare of the ship
-People’s work might relate to their common interest in the ship
Niccolo Machiavelli
-There are two types of cities republicans and principalities
-We are only going to talk about principalities
-Principalities: Cities under one man
-His book is about republics
-All of it is about rome
-It is about the roman republic
-The historian that machiavelli wrote was after 509-49 BCE, after the roman empire was gone
-The absence of christian religion in rome which why they were strong
-Why would learn from rome? Because they are one of the oldest empires
-Rome shows what makes a republic strong
-res publica: the state belongs to the public
-It is a commonwealth, the people’s affair coming together that are united about laws and rights
and the desire to participate in neutral advantages as well as the unwilling will to cooperate and
this is what defines a commonwealth
-Nobody back then is a democrat, republicanism was something that many people thought was
the right thing
-his approach to political theory is completely different than plato and aristotle
-he’s the first to talk about modern political science
-He is interested in what works, if ur interested in politics then it is a complete waste of time
-it can be unhelpful if you are trying to be a good ruler
-Virtue of the good to power is one of machiavelli’s main key points
-Raison d’etat: thinking about how to win
-Machiavelli was determined to show us how of an evil guy he was
-So that we would all learn and be successful rulers
-He explains how a republic should work, how they ought to be
-Renesance humanism: the shift from christian idea paintings to a human interest
-Two types of republicanism: developmental and protective
-Developmental: improving the lives of the individuals (Aristotle, Rousseau)
-Protective: protects the liberty and integrity of state and people (Machiavelli)
-Machiavelli says protective is better because it is a new way of looking at politics
-Republics are good because they promote freedom and liberty
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