Plato Vs. Aristotle On The Middle Class As Ruling Entity Essay

1258 Words Feb 10th, 2015 null Page
Since the antiquity, the question of who is fit to rule has been examined. When it comes to deciding who should rule, philosophers come with different views. From Plato, Aristotle, Polybius to Cicero, all have their own vision of how the rulers should be. This paper will argue that Plato suggests philosopher kings should rule whereas Aristotle proposes the middle class as ruling entity. For Polybius, society needs a mixed government and Cicero recommends replicating the Roman system.
First, when it comes to answering the question of who should rule, Plato suggests, "philosophers [must] become kings…or those now called kings [must]…genuinely and adequately philosophize.” (The republic) On one hand, contrarily to politicians that are lead by personal ambition and desire of power, the philosopher kings rule with their sense of duty to do what is best for the common good and they desire to enlighten the society. To Plato, “Until philosophers are kings, or the kings and princes of this world have the spirit and power of philosophy, and political greatness and wisdom meet in one, . . . cities will never have rest from their evils . . .” (the republic) Also, Plato believes in specialization. Each individual should do what he is the best at. He believed leaders needed to be wise and trained in how to run a state, just as captains of ships are trained in how to run a ship. Because philosophers are the one that detains knowledge and can see and understand what others do not, they…

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