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Conception of the Citizen in Book Three of Politics - Essay Example

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Conception of the Citizen in Book three of Politics Your Name Student Number Course Number Due Date Conception of the Citizen in Book three of Politics In many ways, the foundations of many of the disciplines that are seen in today’s world are those that were laid by the studies conducted by Aristotle…
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Conception of the Citizen in Book Three of Politics

His area of study remains mostly the Greek states but he also includes as a part of his study the states that were in contact with Greece at that point of time. Aristotle was a part of ancient Greece and many of his worldviews may appear to be outdated and outmoded to any contemporary observer. However, the value of his contributions lies in the fact that they enabled a discussion of the relative worth of different modes of government. This played a great role in shaping future conceptions of governments and the state. The role of the citizen within such structures is also something that Aristotle discussed at length in his book. The importance of such discussions in the contemporary world lies in the fact that they enable the modern political commentator to be aware of the origins of democracy, which is the most favored form of government in today’s world. A deep understanding of the origins of this form of government and the earliest objections to it and the earliest appreciations of it is necessary for the smooth working of democracies in today’s world. Aristotle’s understanding of these political structures and his meticulous research into the roots of the problems that he discusses reveals an urge to understand the problems of the Greek states and press for a solution. This displays an objective and non-mercenary approach to the problem of politics, something which may again serve as a model for present-day commentators. The concept of the role of the citizen in a state is what is discussed at length in Book three of Aristotle’s work, Politics. This paper shall seek to analyze the concept as it is put forward by Aristotle. The analysis in this paper shall also seek to understand the reasons that Aristotle may have in conceptualizing the citizen in the way that he does. The class leanings and the misogyny in the conceptions of the citizen that Aristotle holds shall be made clear in this paper. An attempt shall be made to look at the conditions in ancient Greece that made it necessary and in a certain sense, inevitable for Aristotle to hold the views that he does in Book three of Politics. The arguments that shall be used in this paper shall employ modern theoretical frameworks such as feminism and Marxism as well, for the analysis of Aristotle. Aristotle’s conception of the citizen depends greatly upon the kind of state that a person lived in. in certain cases, he argues that the very question of a person’s citizenship had to be questioned for it to be determined eventually whether he or she was a citizen or not. He details the characteristic of a democracy, an oligarchy and a monarchy and the merits and demerits of each, according to the role that the citizen was expected to play in each of these forms of government. Who would be considered to be a citizen and who would not, would also depend heavily upon the character of the government, according to Aristotle. Aristotle thus, destabilized the notion of geographical citizenship. According to this notion, a person would be considered to be a citizen of a particular place as long as that person would be present within the geographical boundaries of that state. By doing so, Aristotle makes the status of citizenship extremely contingent upon the needs of the state and also upon the responsibilities and duties of the citizen towards the state. In this ... Read More
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