Politics: Philosophical Definition

Political philosophy:

The political philosophy is a central concept. It comes from the Greek “polis”, the city, and “techne,” Science: politics is defined as a science of government of the city.

As a theoretical science, politics is the science of the ideal system or doctrine from which the government must pay its share. It is usually the work of political parties.

Political philosophy is not a technique of political action, it is a reflection on the plurality of governments and purpose of the policy. From Plato to Montesquieu, the question of political philosophy was: what is the best diet?

Rousseau then turned the question: What principles underpin the legitimacy of power?

Contemporary philosophers (Habermas, Arendt, Rawls) have made democracy the inescapable framework of political thought. Among them the question is: how to improve democracy? What threat? How to save?

Definitions of philosophers:


Plato: “The art of politics making the most beautiful and most excellent of all tissues, shell in each city, all the people, slaves or free men, the overall emissions in its frame, and providing to the City any the happiness it can enjoy, control and direct “(The Statesman)

Aristotle: “Science is the sovereign political science” (Nicomachean Ethics)

Aristotle: “And since the policy makes use of other practical sciences and, moreover, to legislate on what to do and what we must abstain, the end of this science will encompass the purposes of other sciences; whence it follows that the end of the policy will be strictly human well ”

Hobbes: “The only way to build a common power is to entrust the power and strength to one man, or Assembly that would reduce all their wills, by majority rule in one will. That is to say, appoint a man or a meeting, to assume the personality of the people and that everyone admits and recognizes as the author of anything done or would have done so, as to those things which concern Peace and Security Policy, who has assumed their personality, and each, therefore, submit to his will and the will to trial and trial of this man or this meeting. The multitude, and united in a single person, is so called Republic. This is the generation of that great Leviathan ”

Machiavelli: “Everything is not political, but politics is interested in everything”

Rousseau: “If there were a people of gods, their government democratically”

Chateaubriand: “The greatest misfortune of men is to have laws and a government. Any government is evil, any government is a yoke ”

Weber: “In politics, we mean all the efforts made to participate in power or to influence the distribution of power, either among states or among the various groups within a state” (the Spirit of Capitalism)

Mao Tse Tung: “Politics is war without bloodshed, war and bloody policy”

Churchill: “Democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been experienced in history”

Arendt: “To be political, to live in a polis, meant that all things are decided through words and persuasion and not by force or violence”


Cite this article as: Tim, "Politics: Philosophical Definition, May 26, 2012, " in Philosophy & Philosophers, May 26, 2012, https://www.the-philosophy.com/politics-philosophical-definition.

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