The Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy Newsletter

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Recent studies of the citizen and citizenship in Aristotle, such as those of Hansen, Morrison, and Collins, have focused attention on a somewhat neglected topic in Aristotle’s work. While a definitive treatment of this topic awaits a comprehensive catalogue of the uses of politeia in the Politica and the Ath. at least, with over 500 occurrences in the Politica alone, in this paper I contribute to the catalogue project by considering some examples of Aristotle’s use of politeia in idioms from earlier Greek literature which express participation in citizenship, giving a share in citizenship, and so on. I consider also Aristotle’s apparent awareness of inscriptions recording grants of citizenship. Understanding politeia as citizenship appears to provide attractive alternative interpretations for some otherwise challenging passages.


John J. Mulhern presented “Politeia as Citizenship in Aristotle” to the Society at its meeting with the American Philological Association in Philadelphia in 2012.

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