Synopses & Reviews
The Politics is one of Aristotle's most important works, having had an inestimable influence on political thought up until the present day. This volume provides a clear and accurate translation of the first two books together with helpful philosophical commentary.
"The volumes in the Clarendon Aristotle Series seek to meet the needs of philosophically inclined readers who do not know Greek by providing accurate translations of selected Aristotelian texts accompanied by philosophical commentaries. To these ends, Trevor Saunder's welcome addition to the series...provides a number of useful tools."--The Philosophical Review
"This is a welcome addition to a reputable series. S's translation of the first two books of Aristotle's Politics is in smooth vernacular English, while remaining true to the literal meaning of the Greek text ... The translation given here by S. is especially admirable in that it is clear, consistent, and readable, unlike many recent translations that have tried to capture the almost crabbed style of Aristotle's Greek ... S's commentary is a model of its kind. It is concise, yet informative; covering the major scholarly disputes quite economically, while referring the reader to the best recent discussions of textual and interpretative problems."--John J. Cleary, Classical Review vol.XLVII no.1, 1997
"Each volume in the scrupulously edited series offers literal translations and concise commentaries emphasizing important philosophical issues and holding Aristotle to the same exacting standards that one should expect of a contemporary philosopher ... Trevor Saunders' volume clearly meets the high standards of the Clarendon series ... very accurate and reliable ... Saunders' commentary is also superb: concise and clear, yet packed with information ... Aristotle's dependence on and departure from Plato's politics are nowhere more evident than in Politics I and II; and Saunders frequently puts his extensive knowledge of Plato's Republic, Statesman, and Laws to work in elucidating and evaluating Aristotle's numerous allusions to and criticisms of his former teacher ... This book is a credit to the Clarendon Aristotle series and will prove indispensable for serious students of Aristotle's Politics."--Polis
"Trevor Saunders' Clarendon Aristotle edition of Politics I and II includes a short introduction with a discussion of the relation between the two books, a translation which is a revision of S.'s previous version in the Penguin Classics series, and an informative commentary which is a judicious blend of interpretation and criticism, especially in its assessment of Aristotle's treatment of his predecessors, particularly Plato. Allusions to subsequent political writing, in the broadest sense, include both Bagehot and Cornford's Microcosmographia Academica."--Phronesis
"A welcome addition to the Clarendon Aristotle series is Trevor Saunders's Aristotle, Politics Books I and II. The translation is a revision of Saunders's earlier revision of T.A. Sinclair's version for Penguin. The commentary is full and helpful, but those familiar with Saunders's work on Plato's Laws will not be surprised to discover that the great strength of this volume is the sections in Book II dealing with comparative political systems."--Greece and Rome
A key document in the history of Western political thought, "Politics" raises and discusses many theoretical and practical political issues which are still debated today. This volume contains an English translation of the first two books, together with philosophical commentary.
Aristotle's Politics is a key document in Western political thought. In these first two books Aristotle shows his complete mastery of political theory and practice, and raises many crucial issues still with us today. In Book I he argues vigorously for a political theory based on 'nature'. By nature, man is a 'political animal', one naturally fitted for life in a polis or state. Some people, however, are natural slaves; and women are by nature subordinate to men. Acquisition and exchange are natural, but not trading for profit. In Book II he launches a sharp attack on Plato's two 'utopias', the Republic and the Laws, and also criticizes three historical states reputed to be well governed: Sparta, Crete, and Carthage. This volume contains a close translation of these two books, together with a philosophical commentary. It is well suited to the requirements of readers who do not know Greek.