Argumentos de Aristóteles para sua antropologia política e a existência natural da polis

Journal of Teleological Science 3 (3):50-80. Translated by Salles Sergio (2023)
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Aristotle’s Politicsis not only famous for its theory of constitutions, but for its statements about human nature. According to the central claim of Aristotle’s political anthropology, man is by nature a political animal (phusei politikon zôon). This famous statement is presented as the conclusion of the first set of arguments that Aristotle develops in the second chapter of book I of the Politics(Pol.,I, 2, 1252a24–1253a3). Aristotle’s statement is inextricably linked with the claim that the polisexists by nature (phusei), which he mentions in the same phrase, as part of his conclusion: “From these considerations it is evident that the polisis one of the things that exist by nature, and that man is by nature a political animal”(Pol.,I, 2, 1253a1–3). Evidently, the claims that the polisexists by nature and that man is by nature a political animal are complementary. This article presents an interpretation of the two complementary claims or theses arguing that in Pol.,I, 2 Aristotle conceives exclusively of human beings as political animals because the whole chapter focuses on theanalysisof the polis,a community peculiar to humans. Italso examines Aristotle’sclaim that the polis“is by nature prior (proteron) to the household and to the individual”(Pol.,I, 2, 1253a18–19). The paperdisagrees withscholars whounderstand this claim as an independent third thesis and theoremand argues that Aristotle’s claim functions as a strong argument for the thesis that man is by nature a political animal. Furthermore, it contends thatAristotle neither defends an organic theory of the polisnor has a “tendency towards totalitarianism”(J. Barnes).

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Manuel Dr. Knoll
Turkish-German University Istanbul


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