Review Questions for the Final Exam

Aristotle's Politics and Aquinas

1. Why does Aristotle think man is a political animal? How is our political nature dependent upon our rational nature? (I.1-2)

2. What is the justification, mode, purpose of the rule of a master over the slave, a parent over a child, a husband over a wife? How does understanding these forms help us understand the nature of political rule among citizens? (I.3-12)

3. Explain Aristotle's distinction between natural and artificial acquisition of wealth. Why is he wary of artificial acquisition called money making? Why and how must it be limited?

4. What is Aristotle's criticism of communal ownership of property as suggested by Plato? (II.4,5)

5. How does Aristotle define the citizen? State and explain Aristotle's definition of the regime (constitution). Is this different from our understanding? (III.1-3; IV.1)

6. Explain Aristotle's distinction between a good man and a good citizen. Under what circumstances might a good man be a good citizen? (III.4)

7. Explain the arguments for and against "universal suffrage." (III.5)

8. Outline Aristotle's six-fold typology of political regimes. State and define each of the six and explain the principle by which the chart is organized. (III.6-7)

9. State the arguments for and against the claim to rule of the many and democratic forms of government. (III.9-11)

10. Explain the difference between commutative and distributive justice. (Aquinas II-II 61.aa 1-3). Why is the issue of distributive justice - and the problem of commensurability - at the root of the quarrels about who should rule? (III.12-13)

11. Under what circumstances does Aristotle endorse kingship? (III.14-18)

12. Explain the idea of polity or mixed regime? What does it mix? How does it mix? What does it achieve? (IV.8-9; Summa I-II 105 a. 1)

13. How is human law derived from natural law? (Summa I-II 91.3; 95.1-2)

14. What contribution does liberal education make to political life? (VII.1; VIII. 1-2)


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