Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10077/10716
Title: Cicero’s View on the Merits of a Practical Life in De republica 1: What is Missing? A comparison with Plato and Aristotle
Authors: Schütrumpf, Eckart
Keywords: Theoretical lifepractical lifeCiceroAristotle
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Eckart Schütrumpf, "Cicero’s View on the Merits of a Practical Life in De republica 1: What is Missing? A comparison with Plato and Aristotle", in: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics, XVI (2014) 2, pp. 395-411
Series/Report no.: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics
XVI (2014) 2
Abstract: 
Cicero’s views on the theoretical–practical life controversy in De Re republica book 1 reflect his own career and accomplishments and are phrased in terms of the success of defending the state against those who wanted to destroy it. Cicero places himself in a tradition of men, from Miltiades to Cato, who entered the fracas of public life and saved the res publica. Plato addresses in Politeia 6 496b-e the theoretical–practical life controversy from the same perspective of defending or saving a desirable condition, however, for him it is not the government but the integrity of a philosophical life that needs to be protected. Philosophy is the highest form of existence and deserves all effort. Getting involved in politics would first of all jeopardize the integrity of a philosophical existence. Aristotle at Politics 7 ch. 2-3 approaches in a more Hellenistic manner the theoretical–practical life controversy from the personal perspective, that is the most desirable life. This is one of virtue which consists in acting. However, the highest form of activity is not that of the practical life but that of theory like that of god who is not engaged in “outside actions”. Cicero will follow Aristotle in focusing on virtus, however, he will do away with the theoretical side of human excellence which for both Plato and Aristotle deserved priority.
Type: Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10077/10716
ISSN: 1825-5167
Appears in Collections:Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2014) XVI/2

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