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Publisher's Summary

Aristotle's Politics is a work of political philosophy. The end of Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics declared that the inquiry into ethics necessarily follows into politics, and the two works are frequently considered to be parts of a larger treatise, or perhaps connected lectures, dealing with the philosophy of human affairs.

Aristotle is generally regarded as one of the most influential ancient thinkers in a number of philosophical fields, including political theory.

Public Domain (P)2010 Alpha DVD LLC

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  • Jeff
  • Sonoma, Ca, United States
  • 02-25-15

Aristotle Lives Again!

First of all, Mathew Josdal nailed the narration. I'd actually read snippets of Politics before and found them interesting but somewhat dull; Josdal's narration makes Politics feel like your favorite Poli-Sci professor's lectures on political theory. Bravo! I'm currently listening to the Ethics but plan to come back to Politics for a second listen.

Aristotle's discussion about the working of different political systems is most useful in understanding the political environment of ancient Greece, but many of the questions he addresses are still relevant today: How should various types of governments be ideally structured? What are some of the strengths and weaknesses of Democracy? How should we manage income inequality? Aristotle explores these questions and many more with a sense of logic and clarity of thought almost unparalleled in the history of literature. What’s more, the answers he came up with are still compelling 2,000 years later.

I really enjoyed Aristotle's discussion on constitutional republics (notably Carthage), and found it interesting how he judged them to be superior to Oligarchy or Democracy. One thing that may annoy modern readers is the author's occasional sexist remarks, but then again it isn't really fair to use today's standards to judge those from a different age under different societal norms.

To get the most out of this book, I recommend listeners first acquaint themselves with Plato's Republic and Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War (both available on Audible). Thucydides gives the reader a general background of Greek world as it existed in Aristotle’s day, while The Republic covers many of Plato's political arguments that Aristotle works so hard to refute.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Excellent!...Aristotle as it should be read...

If you're interested by the works of Aristotle you should definitely go for it ; the reader makes it easy to follow...

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Mildly Interesting

What did you like best about Politics? What did you like least?

Sometimes Aristotle had interesting things to say about what causes stability in governments and the bit at the end about education was kind of interesting. He also has an unfortunate tendency to meander extensively and repeat himself, however.

What do you think your next listen will be?

Finishing up Hamlet, Prince of Denmark: A Novel, which is much more entertaining than this was, and then on to Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.

Have you listened to any of Matthew Josdal’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I have not, but this performance was impressive. Aristotle is hard to read, and his inflection was a great tool in understanding Aristotle's convoluted sentences.

Could you see Politics being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Haha, no. It would just be one guy droning on about different forms of government.

Any additional comments?

Read this for a class on Classical Political Theory. Would not necessarily recommend it to the casual listener - mostly just Classicists and PoliSci students.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful