chapter  1
28 Pages


Plato's Republic, written around 375 BC, was composed as a paean to Socratic moral and political philosophy, and at its heart could be found the concept of order. Aristotle's subsequent work The Politics is composed of a multitude of various conclusions as to how a society should be best composed and governed, drawn from a series of empirical observations and studies of comparative politics. The presence of a Christian God at the very centre of its philosophy is the critical and distinguishing feature of medieval legal and political theory. One of the most striking developments in moral and political philosophy has been the reassertion of a distinctively humanist politics, and jurisprudence, of friendship and compassion; one, moreover, that seems rather more willing to flirt with Christian theology. The chapter also presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book.