By Fred D. Miller, David Keyt
Aristotle's "Politics" is mostly thought of to be a founding textual content of Western political philosophy. It defines man's courting to the country, the character of political neighborhood, the mechanisms of justice and a critique of the political stipulations of the time. The papers during this quantity were gathered including a view to offering a finished better half to the "Politics". One dates from the nineteenth century, 4 have been written especially for this quantity, and the remainder were revised and edited to fit the volume's wishes.
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Extra info for A Companion to Aristotle's Politics
And Aristotle is only giving a theoretical 11 tion of the position which he could not justify for himself. I t is perh aps hardly necessary to notice another possible misconception. If Ari stotle is not abolishing man's will before the moral order of the world, still l ess does he mean by the "nature" which produces the State what we mean wh en we contrast the natural and the spiritual. It is true that he not u nfreq ue ntly uses "nature" in this lower sense, as in the Ethics, where he is showing that virtue does not come by nature but through a discipline of the will ( EN I I .
And this morality is not something w hich belongs to each man's private life. It is community in it which co nstit utes the State or political organism. But the consciousness of this orga nism, and therefore its morality, can exist nowhere but in its members. The p rinciple of the whole is present in the parts. I ts reason and morality are th eirs; its end is theirs; it is in them that it feels, suffers and enjoys. And if the co nverse is not true, if the end of any particular member seems to be so mething else than the end of the whole, it is because this single function 16 In MA 1 0.
Thus we find that the individual who realizes his chief good or happiness is necessarily a citizen. And the strongest expression which Aristotle has given to this view is to be found in his statement that the individual is posterior to the State, and a part of it. To say that the State is prior to the individual means primarily no more than that his end is realized in it. By "prior" Aristotle often means not anterior in time, but prior in idea or, as he sometimes says, in nature. Thus in idea or in nature the end is prior to the means, and the actuality to the potentiality.
A Companion to Aristotle's Politics by Fred D. Miller, David Keyt