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Political Science 1020E Chapter Notes -Aristotle

Political Science
Course Code
Political Science 1020E

of 2
Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal
Democratic Ideal (Page 19-24)
29 September 2011
- democracy is desirable
- however even if a state clams to be democratic, it may not be (with holding
rights, ect.)
- how do you get democracy?
- how do you bring it?
- Chairman Mao was a leader of a "people's democratic dictatorship" in China for
more than 30 years
- may say that democracy is an ideal that most ideologies espose
- it is an essentially contested concept
- democracy is from the Greek word "demokratia"
- demos = people or common people
- kratein = to rule
- in Greece, the aristocrats believed the experts should rule (they were wise
enough to govern)
- in Greece, citizens were adults, free, and males (1/10 were citizens)
- women were slaves
- little protection for minority rights
- Socrates was executed because he voiced his opinion and faced a trail where
the citizens believed he was "corrupting the youth"
- Plato didn't like it
- Figure 2.1 (22)
- he thought they were ignornat and envious
- Aristole maintained that democracy that democracy is one of the six basic kinds
of political regimes or constitutions
- it should be in the hands of the people, or many
- polity: the good form of rule by the many
- different from democracy:
- each group keeps an eye on each other
- distribution of wealthy and property
- many heads are better than one
- collective judgements is better