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Political Thinking Essay

Thucydides starts with past, articulates the tech of power that Greeks have developed over time Key tech od power Walls/security, ships/naval power, liquid money/cash These are progresses that Greeks have made for themselves He disagrees with poets His war is the greatest war because of the suffering Plague on the body politics The plague (literally used in the book is also a metaphor in the destruction of political body Greeeks were related by language kinship and religion groups .

They were related by culture = global war turns out to be a civil war between brothers What relation there may be unchanging human culture and political culture Causes of the War/ national character Ethos – character of particular political regime Spartan fear Spartans claims to be the liberator of Greece “your struggle will be much rent then yourself” – knowledge of the enemy is important Is democracy the innovative regime Main art of democracy is freedom and equality This freedom can create problem as individuals create their own agenda Corinthians stress the ideal of the Athenians’ willing to sacrifice themselves for the common good.

What would make the Athenians more democratic- for the city and not self Patriotic ethos? Athenian Justification Athenians give the speech to recall the past They self sacrificed for the nation as they left home to go to sea (islanders nation) Athenians argue that they were generous They view themselves as leaders and not empirilists They do it for the good of themselves and the others as welll They believe that their behaviours are acceptable.

(The Spartans also made the same ppoint about themselves internally) They claim that it is useful for them to take control and use things for their own good, because they were compelled to take their leadership role 2 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 They were driven by fear honour and self interest because someone else less suitable would have taken that role They suggest that international relation is shot through moral ambiguity and political power Spartan war council Human nature must be understood with poltical culture Spartan King Speech.

He implicitly accepts the idea that justice and injustice is irrelevant to nation But what is most advantageous is important He was also worried that asking for peace was cowardice for Spartans Shows that Military ethos- war as a needed solution He called the division of group who were cowards wanting peace and who were the men wanting war Arcidumus had to fight in interest of prudence He argued that the tradiionalism of Spartans make them courageous Their slow thinking make them well thoughtful Archidumus counts their slowness Poltics is not also subject to rationalism.

His speech turns out to be useless as the small speech by St Indifference to him Perticiles shows that correct analysis can show an outcome Shows democratic rationalists Has the tech of military power is shown off Through speech speech he shows a self image Before Greek men were farmers when the battles were usually about two groups for land Athenians are to take over Spartans by their What is the connection between innovation and democracy Democracy is accepting the poor – produces are culture were everyone is heard even the poor 430 BC – periclian oration In contrasts there is not oration for the Spartans.

Because of its novelty democracy is needed If citizens were willing to be killed for Athens then there needs to be a public oration This oration also doesn’t go to the past Perticles offers the democratic way of life and show why Athenian democracy is better than Spartan Oligarchy Democracy is free and Athenians fight for that Pg45 It’s a pleasure and an honor to die for father land Athenians voted to go to war and went to war on their own unlike nowdays democracy where it’s a decision of a president The Athenian freedom allowed them to develop themselves and provided the context where highest of human nature can be realized.

They are self sufficient citizens 3 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 Pericles argues that there is an idealistic way in democracy to live, they are not tyrannized to give their life Democratic courage – Athenians – Pg42 – they see harmony in speech and deeds, relaxed and free and military efficient They are egalitarian and yet equal They think carefully about what they should do and how they should live (Thu)Democracy is prone to particular pathologies if it is the way to live Human nature is not always subject to political control.

Reading notes Historical methods are taken w/o testing them m(murder of Hipparchus) Great war of Peloponnesian last long and was accompanied by hardship like plague, drought, famine War began from the break down of the 30 yrs peace agreed Growth of Athenian power putting fear in Lacedaemonians compelling them to war Both side reasoning for war – Debate in Sparta Athens’ siege on Potidaea – Corinthian colony Decision to help defend island of Corcyra against Corinth Decree restricting trade with Magara – caused hardship in the city Athens had many enemies.

Four speeches are given where enemies complain and state Athens strength/military power Speech of the Corinthians Lacedaemonians’ self control makes them ignorant of foreign affairs Corinthians have been assaulted by Athens and neglected by Lace Athens has done injustice to Greece — helped the stronger Corcyra while merely responding to Corinth and took Potidaea ( interest in Thrace for Gold and Timber) Lace has allowed the subjugation of Corinthians by Athens – Walls Lace have procrastinated who crash enemies when they are doubled Athens approach little by little and when no noticing they come with full force .

Lace won against Persian because of king’s mistake Athens plan and carry it out while Lace keeps things as they are (laczy) Athens never hesitates while Spartans always delay Athens never at home and Spartans always homebodies Athens counts on getting something by going abroad and Spartans are afraid of losing what they have Athenians give bodies to cities and mind to own tasks – when failing to accomplish one they move to another to fulfill that They never rest and don’t let others rest either Spartans believe that fairness lies in a defence that does no harm to othes and brings no damage to selves.

Corinthians ask for an ally (Sparta) to help other allies when to save Peloponnesus 4 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 Speech of Athenians Not to argue against but to represent the city and warn what Spartans will get into if they go to War They don’t respond to any of the Charges like Potidaea Show off their braveness from the Persian War (2/3 ships, best leaders) Say that they not deserving the opposition because they have an empire since the Spartans withdrew from the Persian War when Athens developed the empire for fear, ambition, and advantage.

(Deos, time, and Ophelia) Thucydides’ view of under surface reason FEAR being the reason for injustice and violence The empire was offered and they accepted it without surrendering it after Spartans lost leadership as their own fault for backing down Following natural inclination to rule over others should be praised (Athenians think they deserve as they have been moderate to the others) “those who have power to use force have no need for law” They Warn Spartans that the allies will treat Spartan the same way if they become strong like Athens.

Before making decisions they should think – not to bring trouble to themselves While good judgements can be made between both sides no mistakes should be made Ask to stay according to treaty agreement Speech of Archidamus No war is fun, have seen too many Although we say lets go to war we are not ready for war, not enough ships, no good army and no money September 24/08 Strengths and Weaknesses of democracy of war – uncover theoretical lesson – human nature in general Peak of the democratic Two contrasting images – Plague at Athens and Civil war @cocyra Plague at Athens.

Political context in which it occurred – political diagnosis Emphasises on weakness and disability of traditional religion (proved useless) Athens confused sacred and secular Thucydides cycnical about the claims of religion to provide guidance Importance of speech – it isn’t a transparent medium for communication but is a positive effect for a shared ethical world Pg 90-91 reversed …… suspicion Understanding of ethics and political life – if individuals were to understand each other and share ethical terms.

Meaning of political action depended on how people described others (positive sign of courage shown by an impulsive killing 5 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 Patriotism was corrupted Honour that had nothing to do with common good Thucydides was a pessimists about these Breakdown of Corcyra was a political plague Pericles’ response Thucydides represents the strong democracy in Athens Pg 50 – Athnians though God brought the plague (problem of democracy) – people find fault with their leader even though they voted to go to war Three features of pericles last speech

Take responsibilities for their action -Presented courage as their outrage before Backtrack the future through democratic reasoning – Thucydides presents this speech to show that disunity threatens the poltical… Athens has already began to experience political disfragmentation Rational and shows good judgement – reciprocity Speech is not corrupted in Athens yet as Pericles uses it to bring Athens back to unity – where have the passion gone Athnians way of getting rid of selfishness Spartans solved from age 7 Pericles by the rhetoric that united in democracy.

Leadership, war against Persians, Criticizing post Pericles democracy pg. 57 – contrast of leadership Thucydides suggests that Athenians demo was successful because of a leader like Pericles who was prudent and strong leader who guided that democracy- praises an earlier leader called Pericles successors were more equals in themselves – who competed one another to pleasing the people – even if their desires were imprudent Pericles rhetoric kept these leaders seems prudent since ordinary people don’t have the power to recognize a leader’s qualities etc.

Pericles misunderstood his position – he was too captive in the ideals of democracy that he didn’t see the weakness of democracy = democracy as a result then misleads its leaders Mytileniaen Debate Diodotus – gift of God Cleon open by attacking democracy because e thinks the demos (peoples of Athens are to in love with themselves, kind etc…) He is a greater realists as he thinks of himselves – he wants stronger punishments in the future which will prevent something like that Diodotus – advantage over justice.

Democracy is indecisive – no individual can fight it – but he people must choose Both speakers have rhetorical styles (calling people cowards to be brave it’s a good thing) If they listen to Cleon they will become less innovative, noble etc 6 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 Diotous – looks more like free discussing democrat but- later he sees threats towards the free democracy If we have to lie in order to be believed then id Diodotus lying (c. f. all Cretons are liar) Diodotus and Cleon- both don’t seem to please the demo audience – there is a level of instability that’s built in the people of Athens.

Thucydides shows how democracy is vulnerable to political breakdown Melian Dialogue Athnian occupy the Melos area – Athens vs. the people of Melos “the standard of justice depends on the equality of power to compel and that in fact the strong do what they have the power to do and the weak accept what they have to accept Transformation of the Athenians self understanding – contrast it with Spartans ambassadors – The Athenians “put to death all the grown men whom they took and sold the women and children for slaves” Pg 103 – distant themselves from the question of justice – Melians are compelled to submit to them.

Thucydides suggests that they have been driven to that – might is right Athenian’s self representation – enables them to their success Sicilian debate Athenian assembly – leads to the decision to fight against Greeks and non Greeks proper democratic status that leads to devastation Are democracies good empirically – Athenians do not fully understand that they are ready to attack , they don’t see their history Nikias enters city in a narrow and selfish way unlike Pericles Gives good advice but he is too weak to overcome the Athenians characters that are in expansion.

This shows the speech effect declining going in similarities with Spartans How can democracy permit leaders (strong and charismatic) when democrats are all for equality Alsb : perfect child of empire Imperialism erodes democratic equality Breaks down freedom and equality, as well as relation between leaders and citizens Imperialism and democratic freedom Imperialism and democratic speech – instead of before now it is intensifying people – book 8 Athens in civil war – democratic instability Tool: speech, leadership, political passion.

October 01/08 Plato 7 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 *Glaucon and Adeimantus are two of Plato’s brothers. Plato’s The Republic Key Topic for Plato: Why does justice (of the people) lead to the happiness for the just? 2 Passages on Ethics & Politics Book VII: Quote 538 e- Socrates wants to show that there are good answers to the question of: What is noble or just? He wants to root these virtues in human nature. There was an instability of ethical terminology—previously shown by Thucydides—as an after effect of the Peloponnesian War.

Socrates wanted to defend justice by showing that it was a part of natural order. He did this through philosophical conversation. Plato thought that political stability depended on the ethics of the people Book VI: Quote 492 b-c Plato took the step, unlike Thucydides, to show a good ethical and political state Opening Moves Cephalus The Piraeus, the harbor, was considered as the seat of Athenian democracy The theme of persuasion and compulsion are underlying ones Plato has used for this work At the end of Book II, Glaucon was sorely persuaded by tyrannical tendencies and ambitions.

Quote 491 c- Plato aimed to educate young Athenian democrats who are vulnerable to the wrong-headed education provided by the Imperial Athenian city. Quote 329 d- Cephalus speaks of the sentiment of wisdom over wealth with regards to old age. He suggests that wealth has important and morally significant roles, an example of which is the paying back of debt. Cephalus has an inherently misconstrued and incoherent perception of what is just, what he says conflicts with ‘what he says’. Quote 330 d-It is only now that he is old that he has begun to think about his life and Hades.

He has taken a complacent look at life. His life shows us why we should take a closer look at our life and evaluate what is just. “Paying back one’s debts and giving proper sacrifices to the gods”: This is Cephalus’ view of justice. Socrates believes, however, that justice is a matter of character and good judgment. If justice is ‘paying back one’s debts to the gods’, then isn’t bribery of the gods a form of justice? The main problem with Cephalus is his non-thinking traditionalism (and unwise understanding of wealth), which results in self-contradictions.

He expresses that culture is more important than wealth but follows his tradition that wealth is integral to establishing a good life (ergo a self-contradiction). 8 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 Plato may be showing that fear is not a good motive for leading a just life (fear of Hades-a bad after life; fear of loss of pride as shown by Thucydides conversations and their orators). If we are properly developed/educated within a properly constituted city then we would not be motivated by fear but by a good understanding of justice. [Refer to Quote 491 c].

*Plato in this book is not representing his own views but the views of his characters, in this case Socrates. Polemarchus Takes over the conversation from his father Cephalus Socrates does not aim to define ‘justice’ in terms of its regular use. He wants to show the intrinsic philosophic idea of ‘justice’. He wants to find an account of justice that satisfies ideas of what the individual already believes or has experienced (e. g. crafts and professions: a doctor, a laborer, etc. ) Quote 332 c- Socrates likens justice to a technical skill, however he hasn’t yet established that virtue is a skill.

Socrates is intending to use subjects that we have already grasped to help us understand justice through comparisons Quote 332 d-e: Socrates asks Polemarchus: ‘If justice is important, what use does justice have? Socrates makes Polemarchus realize that he cannot specifically say why justice is important. Quote 333 e: Socratic questioning has a destructive element because it shatters the individual’s beliefs and may not leave them with anything to replace it. Quote 334: Socrates shows that the traditional understanding of what a good or bad person is does not accurately tell us what the good really is.

If justice and good are, indeed, inter-related then there needs to be a proper understanding and relation to what the term ‘good’ is. Quote 338 a-The view that justice is ‘helping friends and harming enemies’ feeds tyrannical views, which is harmful and therefore not just. Socrates believes that justice is a knowable concept or law of nature (or the world). Thrasymachus Here we say goodbye to traditional morality, which paves the way for a highly cynical account of what justice is. Quote 337 d-Plato alludes to Socrates’ trial in later years and his resulting death.

He shows that any scrutiny of justice was not tolerated well by the Imperial Athenians and he defends Socrates’ stance. Socrates is driven by knowledge whereas Thrasymachus isn’t Quote 339 b- Thrasymachus says that justice is:1. ‘the advantage of the stronger’;2. ‘justice is the advantage of the existing regime’ and; 3. ‘justice is another’s good’. Thrasymachus account of justice seems confused and tries to pull down a societal veil of rhetoric. He sees himself as deflating the 9 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking.

POL200Y1 high-mindedness of justice as he sees it being used by democratic politicians. His views are highly cynical, reflecting drive of the politician towards wealth and power. Thracymachus assumes that there is a ruling art/craft that instructs rulers in serving their own interests. Socrates argues that arts or crafts do not benefit the individual artist or crafter, but that the object/service is what is beneficial Quote 348 e: Thrasymachus believes that injustice is best for the individual, but is it? Foreshadowing.

Socrates is at pains to show that rulership should be about the good of the people and not the ruler and that only good men are compelled to rule. Unity and stability, Socrates believes is integral in building the ideal city. What is justice? Justice isn’t always about following the rules. Socrates’ rebuttal of Polemarchus’ view of justice. Justice is about the moral universal good. Justice is also about order. Justice isn’t about ‘helping your friends and harming your enemies’. For Plato there is a moral obligation not to hurt your enemies. It is immoral to do so.

Polemarchus views justice as a craft, a theoretical learning or education. Only certain people can learn and know what justice is, and only the people that know ‘what is just’ should be able to rule. This virtue requires an active attitude, a constant learning and updating the knowledge of what is just. *The idea of ‘techne’ is very important in the understanding of Plato’s view of justice. Thrasymachus believed that justice ‘serves the interest of the strongest’. This view leads to tyranny, an individual that follows this mode of justice there can be no order since the individual follows his desires and not logic.

Socrates realizes that Thrasymachus is unwilling to learn and think otherwise. He could get Thrasymachus to conflict within his own argument but he couldn’t get him to understand that justice could help him unify his self-interest and the common interest. What Plato is trying to get us to do is to think for ourselves about what justice actually is. He tries to get us to participate in the discussion of what justice is. October 08/08 Transition to Book 2 345b, 358c It maybe impossible to bring in a moralist – rational arguments 10 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1.

Republic is a super dialogue – proper audience that is likely to be persuaded and how they should be questioned Glaucon’s challenge Begins with 3 classifications 1. Good that is joy or happiness from experience 2. Goods that we desire both intrinsically and for their consequences, or the endurance for a philosophical view, running a marathon 3. Instrumental goods, bitter medicine, good in so far that they reliantly lead to desired outcomes Why justice must lead to good – ambiguity in this question Physical endurance naturally follows from good health – even the healthiest person can be mistaken about their goods.

Galucon is not interested in artificial consequences that are in the belief Glaucon’s story of origin (genologie of justice) His theory of justice is contended by the later theory of justice By contrast with Thrucymuchus and Polemurchus – Glaucon offers a theory that touches the origin of human and what justice is doing in our life Glaucon shares this so that Socrates can tell him what is wrong with it Sophist (Thrucymuchus) recommended the life of a successful tyrant and why it created a problem We naturally strive to do injustice and that is our purpose ,,,, most people don’t have that power to do so.

So people don’t do injustice because there is a desire for social esteem and not because they embraces justice Justice is a strategy of power in self protection based on our human nature as we come together People value justice only because they don’t want to be harmed If they were manly and couregous then they would persue what they want and do injustice Offers a conception of human goodness – human beings pursue good and honour Hypothetical story of Gyges ring – whether anyone acquired a ring of invisibility then he would use that ring to become a happy tyrant.

362b – earlier opinions of justice, (any questions based on reputation) He’s not thinking of justice as a state of soul but is thinking about the instrumental goods Interpretation of Glaucon He takes discussion back to origin, wants to know that nature of justice People tend to view justice as something that exists in the laws and not outside the laws Only through an evaluation of the history and origin of human we can understand it Glaucon might seem to be a realist – this is what human beings are like He’s not sinister but he provides only a negative ideal in which justice is a necessary evil.

Shares ideals with modern liberal theory with Thomas Hobbes etc – human’s basic goal is to do own good and enjoy the greatest good possible , people 11 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 come together for their own good, city is convetional and directed toward controlling the urges Government doesn’t provide an account of virtue, but citizens think of their own good Adeimantus’ speech His view is of Cultural consequences that result taking a view from human nature Those who conventionally praise justice do so for its consequences and also the afterlife Natural vs.

artificial consequences 364c Certain tension and hypocrisy in view of justice People teach justice while saying that injustice is more profitable There is a general cultural hypocrisy in their beliefs Honour of wealthy people Conventional religion Traditional religion poetry gives no clear basis of thinking that justice pays If Gods can commit injustice for their pleasure then what’s wrong with me doing that The education provided to people leads them ashtray Justice is good while injustice pays People are brought up this way Socrates – uses this coherence in the soul.

Justice has something to do with working that coherence – to establish the healthy condition of the soul Soul/state analysis Develops an analogy – latent principle – we see justice in the city because there is justice and injustice in the city Thucydides’ description of Corcya Justice as a whole city – to shed light in what justice is In relation to other cities — Toronto is a just city, it doesn’t take advantage of other cities But Socrates chooses to see the city as internal relation of souls in the city Chracterizing the city is essential for the justice.

Justice – paradigmatically social virtue, something to do with what is owed, self controlled- it is the external relations But Socrates is trying to find the individual’s self internal works as a private and not social virtue Justice within a soul Ethos of city and character of citizens – just and unjust characters are in a city that shape the individual’s character Social and political context – bulding a soul state Justice whatever it is ,,,is the same thing in the city and the soul – he wants to compare it in a dialectic way – each understand the other Also provides a cultural critic- education.

Conception of justice is provided by specially trained trainers who are better at 12 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 knowing the philosophy – because they have access to the outside , independent philosophical standards Cities should educate their citizens, but the cities mostly don’t know what the good is and so they need to kno City of pigs Needs to go back to origin Socrates Task is to make the city attractive Socrates city is founded because human beings lack sufficiency to care for themselves Can’t take care of themselves Human beings are naturally makers of conventions.

369c – if people share things with each other – mutual aids Mutual aids society – not because they are protected but because they are individuals are made better because of that mutual Deeply concerned with promoting the common good 369e – economic city – contribute own work for common use of all We best contribute to city if we do that we are most suited for – best suit our natural talents If individuals share themselves as partners and not as their own City will need supply of different sets of makers, producers etc 1) Reciprocity is the key principle of the just city = Principle of specialization.

2) There is no capitalist market city People obtain what they naturally need in order to live naturally with no excessive desires- Glaucon calls this the city of pigs But this city has no justice or injustice because it is not human or relevant to human nature – everybody is engaged in a reciprocal product to make others’ life better Although mutual aid is part of our human nature and oriented to human good, but he recognizes that there is more to human nature than just that Glaucon introduces desires – (Socrates says that military conflicts arise from deisres) Feverish activities and feverish states.

373d – enlargement of city through warfare is needed because he’s agreed to study the feverish city – but doesn’t admire the empiricism carried out by in the city 399a – how is it cleaned?? Educating warriors Military force, workers, Development of institution – education is needed Gaurdians must protect the city but they must be educated – cultural Worriers must be educated to integrate to pose psychologically : Brave, courageous and moderation, gentleness, Athenian daring and Spartan moderation.

These philosophical dogs need to know what is their own – can’t take too selfish because that can lead to military dictatorship But also what is public goood and what is common good 392ab – Poets teach that injustice pays 13 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 377c – young shouldn’t find justification of immoral behaviours Purifying the representation of Gods Properly expressed piety is important Poets – must glorify heroes – Achilles complained about life after death (the greatest hero complained after death).

Plato – in ordinary political life and culture we get role models – the emotional education is needed for political control, our contemporary culture also has role models who just happen to be heroes and not created ones Education of these worriers are to be educated about emotions, what is just and unjust, what is beautiful, what is ugly, feel things in the right way If a person is educated in early childhood emotionally and ethically then he will enjoy being a good and courageous person, and enjoy carrying out his duty All his soul characteristics will be purified Need to learn to moderate desires.

We think desires are genetic – Plato thinks our desires can be trained and fashioned 389e – Achilles should not be depicted for loving money or return to the battlefield for the gifts he’s offered Can’t represent famous heroes or role models pitying themselves either Positive role models – = need to provide poetic role models Socrates wants them to do this without any regrets or ambivalent 399e – purified the luxurious city – paves way to find justice Socrates = is emplaning the idea of ORDER in the soul Soon he provides a rational order in the psyche October 15/08 Censorship and other provisions

Socrates slandered poetry – against God Manliness in one side and moderation on another for guardians Censorship is a type of repression – violation of our rights In our society we have some censorship – not much for adults Censor poetry among adults for Socrates while education for children What the human good is? Whether the human should question and understand and what not? What our politics should look like if objective human goodness were available to the government: ie: health issues – smoking is bad for health yet government do not outlaw smoking.

Government can promote good health by running health campaigns, through warnings on cigarettes, tax it but won’t outlaw it Plato did not have this belief like our government – he’s not dedicated to right to individual’s freedom – but more of what the human good is Paternalist – Socrates acts like a father figure – this is how he wants the government to be To intrude in private life – 14 www. notesolution. com Political Thinking POL200Y1 412ab – group of rulers from worriers They have wisdom They are older man.

Less complete worriers are auxiliaries Police froce but go beyond the power of police force – intellectual qualities that go beyond these emotions Noble Lie Useful falsehood Teaches the civilization they’re 415ab – gold, silver souls Justifies hierarchies of power Myth of the metals – gold silver iron bronze – imaginary citizens believe it as a patriotic myths Not literally CF – people don’t come out of the soul but we say that This myth/metaphor means that all ciizens are like brothers who are didcated to each other and attach to the city

Meritocracy and not hierarchy – feeling, although that is what is seems like Hierarchies are based not on the evbaluiation of the person’s value (what’s inside the child) It’s not where he is born or how rich the parents are This myth doesn’t lead to a fixed cast system but rather a meritocracy Socrates wants guardians to be kept in camps separated from the outside The rulers are the philosophers – they should not be fallible because they can’t make mistake – most impartial and willing.

Socrates is setting up an utopian society that we can use – but not exactly – it is not to be implemented – (if you’re not meaningful to the words then what is the educational function/ purpose Happiness of individual Worriers and rulers will not be happy by the materialistic standards of the world What is the point of a city if the citizens are unhealthy and unhappy = that means the city is not healthy There are communistic features to Plato’s ideas but not entirely Warriors and rulers can’t own private property Doe.


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