Was Athenian Democracy Genuinely Democratic? History Of Political Thought, Trinity Collage Dublin Essay

1475 words - 6 pages

Was Athenian Democracy Genuinely Democratic?
To determine whether Athenian democracy was truly democratic by our standards today, we must first unwrap what democracy means to people at the present. Democracy is a word that has roots in Greece with Demos meaning the people and Kratos meaning power translating to “the power of the people.” During modern times, the word Democracy has been diluted partly due to over use. Countries today which are no more democratic than that of tsarist Russia try hard to portray themselves as a democracy of the people to achieve an air of legitimacy. The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea otherwise known as North Korea, sounds very democratic by its name but in truth it is much closer to that of an absolute monarchy. There is no single definitive definition of Democracy we can look to; however, Dahl’s interpretation is satisfactory he describes democracy, “As a set of procedures established by the rule of law that guarantees civil and political liberties to oversee popular control of political institutions that make decisions on the allocation of resources.” Athenian democracy origin can go back as far as 600 BC when a statesman named Solon brought through a reform package which laid the foundations for democracy to grow. It wasn’t until 100 years later when a wealthy aristocrat named Cleisthenes lead a political reform movement in reaction to a harsh dictatorship that had developed, this brought forward the period of Athenian democracy which went on to resist the aggressive Persian invasions.
Democracy in Athens was grounded around three political institutions, the Assembly, The Council of 500 and the People’s Court. Athenians viewed the Assembly as the most important institution of their democracy. The Assembly was essentially the regular meeting of all Male Athenian citizens where they would listen, debate and vote on the different aspects of the governing of their state. Every male citizen could openly speak during the Assembly no matter what position they occupied in society. However, in Plato’s Protagoras Socrates says, “when the Athenian Assembly is discussing construction, the citizens call for builders to speak, and when it is discussing the construction of ships they call for shipwrights, but if anyone else, whom the people do not regard as a craftsman, attempts to advise them, no matter how handsome and wealthy and well-born he may be, not one of these things induces them to accept him; they merely laugh him to scorn and shout him down.” The council of 500 was more of the fulltime government and was made up of 50 citizens from each of the 10 tribes. The Councils main function was to prepare the agenda for the Assembly’s meetings. During the year 50 different councilors from the different Tribes would serve as President, in times of upheaval and crisis the safety of the state would fall in the hands of the president. The third important institution was the People’s Court these were courts of law t...


Why the concept of democracy is universally valued and essentially contested? - Democratic Theory - Essay

1516 words - 7 pages (1970: 09) notes, all of the developed, industrialized nations have a democratic political system. In contrast, most of the nations in the poorest segment of the world community operate under various forms of non-democratic political system. Casual observation also suggests that economic growth does not necessarily bring about a demand for democracy. There are examples of authoritarian regimes in Southeast Asia and the Middle East where citizens

Federalist vs Democratic Republicans - GRCC History - Essay

841 words - 4 pages control. While Bache felt that putting the responsibility of the national debt using the Whiskey tax was wrong, Hamilton thought the young America should be debt free as soon as possible. Federalists and Democratic Republicans differed mainly on their ideal of the role and involvement of the government through the development of America. While the Democratic Republicans led by Jefferson and voiced by Benjamin Bache pushed for a limited government, Hamilton and the Federalists pushed for a strong government. It seems that today, America is still in the middle of the Hamilton-Jefferson debate. Works Cited Hollitz, John. Contending Voices. 3rd ed., Boston, Wadsworth, 2011.

Political History Of Hungary Paper

2060 words - 9 pages In order to understand Hungary's Euro-policy it is necessary to take a deeper insight into its political history in the face of economic development and monetary integration.The Hungarian political system is characterised by bureaucratic elements such as the power being in the hand of political elites. Reforms are still being made according to power instead of considering social and economic benefits. This is mainly due to its communist

Political participation in UK and Germany - political science, democracy and dictatorship - essay

619 words - 3 pages World Politics UK Change in UK political party membership has not been uniform either between parties or over time. In the 19th century, Parties in the UK were divided by how much power parliament thought they should have. Later in the 19th century,  the two main parties (Conservatives and Liberals), built more parties to appeal to more male voters (Orvis and Drogus 2018, 321). The Labour party party was founded in the 1900’s. “By the 1920’s

Jackson democracy - AP Us History - Essay

923 words - 4 pages Free Speech Essay ​The freedom of speech, enshrined in the ​First Amendment​ ​to the Constitution, is a foundational American right. Nowhere is that right more important than on our college campuses, where the free flow of ideas and the clash of opposing views advance knowledge and promote human progress. It is on our college campuses, however, where some of the most severe violations of free speech occur and where students are regularly

What Was The Political Impact Of WW1 On Europe?

1064 words - 5 pages political impacts, both direct and indirect.One of the instances of indirect political impact of WWI was the steadfastly developed idea of 'unity' behind ones government, borne by feelings of patriotism. This mainly existed at the very beginning of war, for example in France, the famous 'Union Sacre' formed in around 1914 is an illustration of where socialist ideas were put side in favour of nationalist feelings. Similarly in Germany 'Burgfrieden

Andrew Jackson Democratic Essay Outline - Churchill High School/US History - Essay

505 words - 3 pages Mrs. Oropez AP US History 4 November 2016 Andrew Jackson Democratic Essay Outline Thesis: Andrew Jackson was not democratic at all due to his hunger for power, his abuse of that power, and his selfishness and unwillingness to do what was best for the country. A. Andrew Jackson’s hunger for power contributed to the fact that he was not democratic. I. This selfishness is shown in a statement from the BUS to Jackson in which the US bank states that

The Rise of Non-Traditional Political Parties During the Depression - History/Grade 12 - Essay

1387 words - 6 pages that is described as the harshest time Canadians have ever had to face, and they proved that in these times the standard government man not be what they need. Unusual political parties rose up from the idea of helping the people, and this just shows that the 1930s was most certainly an period where non-traditional political parties were needed to ensure Canada’s survival during the Great Depression. CCF. Canada History: 2013 http

Political dominance of the Republican party 1865-1912 - Durham Sixth Form Centre, A Level History - Essay

1339 words - 6 pages “The political dominance of the Republican party was due to the internal divisions of its opponents 1865-1912” Assess the validity of this view. In the years 1865-1912, the political dominance of the Republican was partly due to the internal divisions of the Democrat party at this time. These internal divisions were caused by the weaknesses of President Cleveland and the rise of Populism splitting the party. However, there were other factors

The Theme of Power and Freedom of Thought in Inherit the Wind - Nelson ENG3U5 - Essay

2059 words - 9 pages Damon Karnis Pamela Blair ENG3U5 13 December 2018 On the Revolution of the Heavenly Spheres: The Theme of Power and Freedom of Thought in Inherit the Wind “I do not feel obliged to believe that the same god who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect has intended us to forgo their use” - Galileo Galilei Today, the right to freedom of thought is one that many citizens of the first world take for granted, however, many throughout history

Was Stalin’s postwar bellicosity the principle cause of the breakdown of U.S.-Soviet relations? - History - Essay

3001 words - 13 pages wedge between the two great states, further limiting the opportunities for reconciliation. In this essay I have aimed to demonstrate that neither the orthodox nor revisionist schools of thought provide an adequate answer to the question of who was to blame, therefore Stalins post war bellicosity can not be considered the principle cause for the breakdown of US-Soviet relations. Both states were guilty of aggressive antagonistic behaviour; Stalin

Misuse of democratic institutions in Singapore - Politics of Southeast Asia - Essay

1024 words - 5 pages Prabhmeet Kaur POSC 213- Politics of Southeast Asia Response Paper to Week 11’s readings Singapore has been classified as a hybrid regime compromising of democracy and authoritarianism. This paper aims to support the author’s findings, through examples, that Singapore uses democratic institutions to sustain its hybrid regime regime. Beyond the use of institutions, the PAP has used other methods to remain the front runner during elections which

Analyse the political factors involved in the unification of Italy up to 1861. - IB Higher Level History - Italian Unification - Essay

1071 words - 5 pages [Type text] [Type text] [Type text] Meriel Turner History/Italy Mr. Lambe Analyse the political factors involved in the unification of Italy up to 1861. The political factors involved in the Italian unification from 1848 till 1861 included the obtaining of foreign aid and support, the strengthening and mobilisation of Piedmont, the intervention of Garibaldi and the effect it had on Cavour’s policies and the impact of cultural development on

what was the impact of residential schools in canada - history class - essay

589 words - 3 pages What was the impact of residential school's policy on the first nations communities in the early 20th century? By: Marina Santos Residential schools have been a part of Canadian history for many years, and it has left a large impact on many first nation communities in the 20th century such as families dealing with the effects of separation and loss of traditions, children having their natural community and supports violated and lastly how it

The Detainment of Terrorists Suspects: Does it breach Human Rights - Trinity Anglican School / Legal Studies - Essay

1229 words - 5 pages unnecessary; No one shall be subject to arbitrary arrest (United Nations, n.d.). South Africa's maximum length for which they are allowed to have a terrorist suspect in detention for is 48 hours which provides them with more than enough time to collect evidence to charge the detained suspect. Terrorism is an abominable strategy used to cause intimidation specifically towards innocent people to achieve political aims. ‘The detainment of terrorist