Submission Title

Aristotle's Constitution of Athens and John Locke's Second Treaties of Government: What John Locke Could Learn from the Ancient Mind

Session Number

RS14

Location

Robinson 310

Abstract Number

RS14-c

Abstract

John Locke’s “Second Treaties of Government” is one of the most influential pieces of political philosophy. Locke’s view on a political society lays in a “state of nature” where people are the independent rulers of themselves, but government is in place to create common good and keep peace. Aristotle explains through his “Nicomachean Ethics” that a virtuous person is one that exhibits the “mean” of virtuous qualities. A government then, would be one that lies somewhere within the middle, or the middle class. In his “Politics” he references Solon’s “Constitution of Athens” because the soul of the legislation gave much control to the middle class. If John Locke used Aristotle’s government in the “Politics”, or more specifically the section on the “Constitution of Athens”, then his political theory could have been much stronger leading to greater success for those who used the literature as a template for their government.

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Apr 23rd, 3:15 PM Apr 23rd, 4:45 PM

Aristotle's Constitution of Athens and John Locke's Second Treaties of Government: What John Locke Could Learn from the Ancient Mind

Robinson 310

John Locke’s “Second Treaties of Government” is one of the most influential pieces of political philosophy. Locke’s view on a political society lays in a “state of nature” where people are the independent rulers of themselves, but government is in place to create common good and keep peace. Aristotle explains through his “Nicomachean Ethics” that a virtuous person is one that exhibits the “mean” of virtuous qualities. A government then, would be one that lies somewhere within the middle, or the middle class. In his “Politics” he references Solon’s “Constitution of Athens” because the soul of the legislation gave much control to the middle class. If John Locke used Aristotle’s government in the “Politics”, or more specifically the section on the “Constitution of Athens”, then his political theory could have been much stronger leading to greater success for those who used the literature as a template for their government.