Aristotle by Delba Winthrop

I find Delba Winthrop’s book very interesting so I quote here an opening question about the relation between the philosopher and politics as science:
«The philosopher would have to take politics very seriously indeed. But insofar as political scientists and philosophers are also born citizens under some law, they must somehow learn to distinguish what is peculiar to their cities from what universally belongs to the city. One begins to do this by disputing with a citizen who holds an opinion different from one’s own or, even better, by disputing with a citizen of another city, a stranger who does not even share one’s Athenianism. Hence the importance of the dispute between the democrat and the oligarch and the interruption by a stranger like Gorgias. Political science, it seems, necessarily begins with comparative government while presupposing the possibility of a science of comparative government. But if political science is a science, then it would seem to have to be like other sciences, which are all of natural beings. Therefore, contrary to what we have just said, it appears that the political scientist must at the same time become a natural philosopher in order to learn what a science is and how political science is possible. He must question his own presuppositions, or someone else surely will. How these problems emerge and are resolved in Aristotle’s text we shall see as we proceed.»

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