The Politics: Monarchies, Aristocracies, and Polities Essay

The Politics: Monarchies, Aristocracies, and Polities Essay

Length: 1550 words (4.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview



Throughout Politics, Aristotle goes into detail about monarchies, aristocracies, and polities, as the ideal forms of government. Polity as defined by Aristotle is the virtuous form of a constitutional democracy (Aristotle viewed democracy without constitutional law as a poor form of government). It is essential to a state in which polity is the system of rule that there is a constitution in place to prevent the excesses of majority rule. Although Aristotle perhaps believed polity to be the most realistic form of a virtuous government, he did not view is as the most ideal. According to Aristotle, monarchy is the idealist form of government, followed by aristocracy and polity. Despite this, Aristotle yields that monarchies and aristocracies are also more likely to degrade into undesirable states, such as tyrannies or oligarchies (Baldwin 2012). Therefore, it is fair to say that Aristotle’s ideal form of government is monarchy, despite its flaws, yet the most realistic form of a virtuous government can be found in a state governed by a constitutional democracy (Wilson 2011). 

Aristotle’s view of the ideal form of government, an absolute monarchy headed by a man of excellent character and wisdom, is theoretically sound. Unfortunately, men of such character are a rarity; even rarer so, is it that such a person will actually become the king of a state. In addition, the threat of turning into a tyranny makes monarchy all the more risky (Samaras 2007). An aristocracy, if perpetually ruled by men of excellent virtue, would also be a form of government perhaps favorable to polity. However, all too often aristocracies favor law that benefits the rich and runs the risk of devolving into an oligarchy. Polity, or a constitutional democracy, is a system of government where the middle-class is the primary group of rulers. At its worst, polity can devolve into democracy without law, or mob rule, which is still preferential to tyranny and oligarchy. At its best, polity is rule by the middle-class which does not require men of outstanding virtue (unlike a lawful monarchy or aristocracy), for the better of the state as a whole. Therefore, in practice the ideal form of government is neither a monarchy nor aristocracy. Instead, a constitutional democracy, such as one the United States of America boasts, similar in fashion to Aristotle’s polity, is the best form of governme...


... middle of paper ...


...r, it is the best form of government for both short-term and long-term stability.

Works Cited 

Aristotle. Politics. Sioux Falls: NuVision Publications, 2004. Google Books. Google. Web. 19 Oct. 2012.

Baldwin, Richard. "Aristotle, Ethics." Aristotle, Ethics. Gulf Coast State College, 17 Mar. 2012. Web. 21 Oct. 2012.

Biondi, Carrie-Ann. "Aristotle on the Mixed Constitution and Its Relevance For American Political Thought." Stjohns.edu. Social Philosophy & Policy Foundation, 2007. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. stjohns.edu

Kalyvas, Andreas. "The Tyranny of Dictatorship: When the Greek Tyrant Met the Roman Dictator." Political Theory 35.4 (2007): 412-42. Web. 21 Oct. 2012.

Samaras, Thanassis. "Aristotle's Politics: The City of Book Seven and the Question of Ideology." Classical Quarterly 57.1 (2007): 77-89. Web. 18 Oct. 2012. stjohns.edu

Wilson, James Lindley. "Deliberation, Democracy, and the Rule of Reason in Aristotle's Politics." American Political Science Review 105.2 (2011): 259-72. Web. 20 Oct. 2012. stjohns.edu

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The History of Politics Essays

- Many people ponder the nature of politics. Politics is an art, a way of thinking, and a public, idealistic profession, though it is sometimes succumbs to corruption and a lack of ideals, that often changes the course of world events. Mortals of reason and influence express their ideas in order to form or reform a group’s policy. In democratic society, the populous is able express and apply their inherent views into an arena that beholds a battle for the consensus. However, the premise of the people engaging in free reason and the appointment of representatives of that reason has not always been the case in the historical spectrum....   [tags: Politics]

Powerful Essays
1461 words (4.2 pages)

Essay about Politics : Politics And Politics

- Introduction The idea that some businesses conduct themselves in a corrupt manner and still operate today is mind boggling. These businesses are not the only ones operating in a corrupt manner, there are countries turning a blind eye to the corruption and even have corruption within their government. Make no mistake about it, there is not a country in the world that does not have any form of corruption, or political agendas that bring corruption. Just the past year in the United States, there has been so much political corruption between the presidential candidates that CNN politics (2016) reported 44.6 percent of all registered voters did not go to the polls....   [tags: Political corruption, Bribery, Law, Politics]

Powerful Essays
784 words (2.2 pages)

A Review of Polities, Authority, Identities, and Change Essay

- Polities, Authority, Identities and Change yielded after more than 20 years of productive cooperation of Yale H. Ferguson and Richard W. Mansbach. Several years before publishing Policies, in their previous book The Elusive Quest: Theory and International Politics, Ferguson and Mansbach exposed the need for displaying an alternative approach to perceiving and interpreting relations among different polities, which served as a foundation for this book. (Ferguson & Mansbach, 1988). This fourth collaborative book came into light of the day as the reaction to the perceived increasing disparity between international relations academic knowledge (theory) and international relations practice (realit...   [tags: Authority, Identities, Change]

Powerful Essays
1402 words (4 pages)

Essay on The Politics of Language and The Language of Politics

- Power and Ideology play a large role in how we perceive situations. Allahar and Cote (1998) discuss that ideologies are emotionally charged beliefs and ideas that mediate between individuals and groups; on the one hand, and social reality on the other had. They serve as mediums to understanding the world (Allahar &Cote 1998). Ideologies are presented to the public through language thus how people begin to accept and tout an ideology is based on the language through which it is presented. Language is a determinant factor in the formation of our perceptions of the world (Collins&Glover 2002)....   [tags: somalia, piracy, somali politics]

Powerful Essays
1497 words (4.3 pages)

Essay on Sports and Politics

- "Politics has come to be considered not only inappropriate in the arena of sports, but actually antithetical to it," Zirin says. "We want so much to see sports solely as an arena of play, not seriousness. But here's the thing, this can cheapen not only the greatness and relevance of sports to us as a society, but also the courage of the athletes" (The Nation). The pursuit of fame, wealth and status can blind the human conscious, which is why it is important for us to encourage athletes to speak their minds....   [tags: Politics ]

Powerful Essays
962 words (2.7 pages)

The Religion Of Politics And Politics Essay

- The Religion of Politics The year is 2015 and the upcoming presidential election is extremely prominent in today’s society. Every night on the news, newscasters talk more and more about the candidates and their political opinions on major issues. A few of the most common are refugees, terrorism, and abortion which all have aspects dealing with religion. Presidential candidate, Donald Trump, has even gone as far as saying that all Muslims should be required to have special identification. Here in America we have separation of church and state, yet we are electing our next president on the basis of his opinion on religion....   [tags: Political party, Sociology, Politics, Religion]

Powerful Essays
1125 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on Politics and Christian Obligation

- The day we believe we cannot change our world is the day we believe we cannot influence our neighbor; because to influence our neighbor is to influence part of the world. There is an underlying current that politics are not commendable for Christian interaction, and at best it should remain: a law based moral philosophy. I will argue that these positions are in error. Politics are a human endeavor and worthy of interaction by those that hold a Biblical theology. In short, Christians have an obligation to interact in politics....   [tags: Politics ]

Powerful Essays
2564 words (7.3 pages)

Essay on Decrypting Politics

- Conservatism describes the disposition of people who prefer heavy state intervention in private life and little or no state invention in the economy. Laura Stoker, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, created a graph (Figure 1) that separates people’s political standing based on their views of state intervention in private life and the economy (The Charles and Louise Travers Department of Political Science University of California, Berkeley). This description allows individuals to compare and contrast the different political views of people....   [tags: Politics ]

Powerful Essays
2572 words (7.3 pages)

What is Politics? Essay examples

- Politics. It is possibly the most hated word in the English language. Most people hate politics and government without really knowing what they are. Many different definitions of politics exist. One definition defines politics as the conflict between groups over something they both want. Another similar definition calls politics the "who gets what, when, and how." Government is defined as the institution that has the enforceable right to control people’s behavior. But why do people hate politics and politicians....   [tags: Essays on Politics]

Powerful Essays
1192 words (3.4 pages)

What Is Politics? Essay

- What Is Politics On hearing the word politics, what usually springs to mind are images of government, politicians and their policies or more negatively the idea of corruption and dirty tricks. The actual definition seems to have been obscured and almost lost by such representations and clichés that tend not to pinpoint the true essence, which defines this thing, called politics. In order to make an attempt at a definition of politics a systematic approach is required. To begin with, a brief historical overview will be considered, to understand the origins of politics....   [tags: Essays on Politics]

Free Essays
1873 words (5.4 pages)