Politeia 1 (3):45-67 (2019)

Abstract
Constitutions differ in kind, according to Aristotle, and the perverted ones are posterior to the nondeviant ones. This paper interprets Aristotle’s treatment of monarchy in light of his distinction in Posterior Analytics between the order of being and the order of experience. The paper moves from an analysis of political definitions and their psychological implications to Aristotle’s analysis of kingship as a species of constitutional correctness. It becomes apparent that, when discussing the relation between a political community and the rule befitting it, Aristotle is consistently using cognates of potency whereby a form already present in a thing becomes the principle of formal actualization of another. Such a mutual relation between rulers and ruled and between their psychological powers sheds light on Aristotle’s inclusion of kingship among proper constitutions, even in the absence of shared governance, and to his willingness to suggest policies that preserve even tyrannies.
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  History of Philosophy  Social and Political Philosophy
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DOI 10.5840/politeia20191319
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