Login | Register

Power and friendship : Plato and Aristotle on rule in interpersonal relationships


Power and friendship : Plato and Aristotle on rule in interpersonal relationships

Filotas, Zoli (2007) Power and friendship : Plato and Aristotle on rule in interpersonal relationships. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

Text (application/pdf)
MR34623.pdf - Accepted Version


This thesis explores rule or power [ archein ] in Plato and Aristotle's discussions of interpersonal relationships. I argue that the collectives and communities that are for both thinkers the most important elements of the social world are necessarily structured by power. To see this gives us a better grasp of the relationship between parts of ancient thought that are too often kept apart, and allows us to make sense of the point of view that sees them as continuous with each other. I begin with Plato. His dialogues describe rule as a crucial object of philosophical study, run through with puzzles. Social problems are for Plato best understood by studying both the city and the soul as composite wholes made up of hierarchically arranged parts. And all this theory is realized dramatically in the character of Socrates. Chapter two focuses on what might now seem a puzzle. Aristotle claims that men rule over their wives by nature, but also that they can be virtue friends, which for him implies that they are equal. Using marriage as a case study, I show that for Aristotle there is no tension between equality and rule. Along the way, we see that, in his characteristic systematic manner, Aristotle develops many of the same theoretical materials as Plato. In my final pages, I suggest that modern political discourse's focus on equality makes it difficult to see the importance of rule. I suggest that the views of Plato and Aristotle can therefore make an important contribution to contemporary ethical thought.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Philosophy
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Filotas, Zoli
Pagination:vii, 57 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Thesis Supervisor(s):Smith, Justin
ID Code:975423
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:22 Jan 2013 16:07
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:40
Related URLs:
All items in Spectrum are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved. The use of items is governed by Spectrum's terms of access.

Repository Staff Only: item control page

Downloads per month over past year

Back to top Back to top