The Contemplative and Political Lives in Aristotle and Plato 公开

Chen, Alex (2017)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/v405sb082?locale=zh
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Abstract

Plato and Aristotle are often thought of as thinkers who privileged the contemplative life over and against that of the political one; indeed, it might often seem that political action is superfluous for these two thinkers, except as a means to secure the conditions of the contemplative life. I wish to argue, however, that political action is more important for Plato and Aristotle than is often thought. In Aristotle, political action provides a key component of human happiness that contemplation alone is unable to provide, whereas for Plato, in the happy life of the philosopher kings, political action and contemplation are indistinguishable and inextricable from one another.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Introduction ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………1

Part I: Aristotle and the Connection between the Contemplative and Political Lives ………………7

Chapter 1: The Characteristics of Happiness According to Aristotle…………….…………………9

Chapter 2: The Contemplative Life…………….…………….…………….…………….………………………16

Chapter 3: The Political Animal and the Complete Human Life…………….…………….………..21

Conclusion: The Mixed Life of Contemplation and Politics…………….…………….……………….33

Part II: Plato and the Unity of Politics and Contemplation …………….…………….…………….…………..34

Chapter 1: Setting the Stage…………….…………………….…………………….…………………….………..35

Chapter 2: The Educative Life…………….…………………….…………………….…………………….………40

Conclusion: The Unity of Politics and Contemplation in Education…………….…………………49

Concluding Unscientific Postscript …………….…………………….…………………….…………………….…………50

Bibliography…………….…………………….…………………….…………………….…………………….…………………….53

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