Plato vs. Aristotle Essay

2417 Words Jun 16th, 2002 10 Pages
By Gerard Chretien

Plato vs. Aristotle

Numerous experts in modern time regard Plato as the first genuine political philosopher and Aristotle as the first political scientist. They were both great thinkers in regards to, in part with Socrates, being the foundation of the great western philosophers. Plato and Aristotle each had ideas in how to proceed with improving the society in which they were part of during their existence. It is necessary therefore to analyze their different theoretical approaches regarding their philosophical perspectives, such as ethics and psychology. This paper however will mainly concentrate on Aristotle's views on friendship and how it impacts today's society.

The main objective in Plato's
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Plato whole-heartedly felt that if ever the bronze or iron people rule the state would collapse (Class Notes). He sought to establish the concept of the gold class having wisdom, thus they should be wise and good rulers. It was imperative that those who rule be philosophers and skilled in areas that pertained to the interest of the state.

Aristotle's disagreed with Plato in regards to allowing one particular class to govern the state politically for indefinite period of time. He felt that to not allow interaction among the various classes would inhibit those who posses the ability to engage in political life, an injustice. He feels Plato's structure of classes is politically incorrect for the state. He quotes "It is a further objection that he deprives his Guardians even of happiness, maintaining that happiness of the whole state which should be the object of legislation", ultimately he is stating that those who rule (Guardians), sacrifice their happiness for control and absolute power. Those who are of the gold class, lead such a rigid life, that it will become necessary to impose the same strict way of life on those being governed. He places the idea of moderation on a high pedestal. Many individuals come to favor the concept of moderation because it is flexible, part liberal and part conservative. Plato's ideal society is so difficult to conceive that Aristotle believes that no human being can achieve its rudimentary requirements. He

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