In the Republic Socrates compares his proposal of a philosopher king to the third wave in a series, proverbially the biggest. It must be big, indeed, if it is greater than the second, the abolition of the family. The second proposal is offered as the means to curb factional strife in politics. But this might be a case of a cure worse than the disease. Its institution is explicitly connected by Socrates with the third wave. Aristotle places his discussion of the family at the start of his Politics and not only regards it as an institution to be preserved but accords to it a role Socrates seems to associate with its destruction. This lecture will explore the family’s place in politics as developed in the thought of Plato and Aristotle.
Mr. Alulis has a PhD in political science from the University of Chicago. His principal interests are political philosophy and politics and literature. He has published on Tocqueville and Shakespeare and teaches political science at North Park University.