The evolution of democracy of the utopian society in the athenian government

Democracy tends to blur the distinction between nature and political culture, thereby blinding elites to their own best interests and luring them into immorality. Having lost the use of a portion of their land, they were even more vulnerable to subsequent hardships see Aristot. Remarkably, it seems that a measure blocked before the assembly voted on it did not need to go back to the assembly if it survived the court challenge: Solon took steps to alleviate the crisis of debt that the poor suffered, and to make the constitution of Athens somewhat more equitable.

The Evolution of Athenian Democracy Updated on October 25, more Rebecca Graf is a seasoned writer with nearly a decade of experience and degrees in accounting, history, and creative writing.

What Were Some of the Important Characteristics of Athenian Democracy?

It was only after the fall of Cimon that democracy was able to progress. Indeed, the extensive use of imported non-Greeks " barbarians " as chattel slaves seems to have been an Athenian development.

Cimon did not want democracy for Athens. Anyone featuring on more than a given number of shards variously interpreted as or a majority from voters is removed from public life. Women, slaves and foreigners were excluded.

Both of these processes were in most cases brief and formulaic, but they opened up in the possibility, if some citizen wanted to take some matter up, of a contest before a jury court. The end of the experiment: He gave every Athenian the right to appeal to a jury, thus taking ultimate authority for interpreting the law out of the hands of the Nine Archons and putting it in the hands of a more democratic body, since any citizen could serve on a jury Aristot.

Intended as a way of ridding the city of a powerful but unpopular figure, it can all too easily be used for political vendetta. Poor citizens, in years of poor harvests, had to mortgage portions of their land to wealthier citizens in exchange for food and seed to plant.

This is why so many Americans today are angry at government as the elite attempt to impose European style democracy on Americans. The ability of the tyrant to gain power was either through their military or political achievements and the backing of the lower classes.

The officials of the democracy were in part elected by the Assembly and in large part chosen by lottery in a process called sortition. Anyone ostracized must go into exile for ten years but no harm is done to his family, his property or his own subsequent rights. The masses preferred Cleisthenes who was not inclined to take away citizenship from those who had very little else in life.

Voting was by simple majority. In other words it was often a rejection of Calvinism. The age limit of 30 or older, the same as that for office holders but ten years older than that required for participation in the assembly, gave the courts a certain standing in relation to the assembly. However, historians argue that selection to the boule was not always just a matter of chance.

The result was Athens divided into 10 major tribes who in turn made up the Council of Five Hundred, or the boule. However, "any member of the Assembly could demand a recount". In a public suit the litigants each had three hours to speak, much less in private suits though here it was in proportion to the amount of money at stake.

From then on the selection of the archon became more scrutinized, and the power of the Council of the Areopagus decreased. While his opponents were away attempting to assist the Spartans, Ephialtes persuaded the Assembly to reduce the powers of the Areopagus: The resulting crisis threatened both the stability and prosperity of Athens.

No judges presided over the courts nor did anyone give legal direction to the jurors; magistrates had only an administrative function and were laymen. When it came to penal sanctions, no officeholder could impose a fine over fifty drachmas.

Athenian Democracy

So "Thucydides has established for his reader the existence of a potentially fatal structural flaw in the edifice of democratic ways of knowing and doing. Among modern countries where democracy is the favoured system, the Athenian experiment eventually acquires a hallowed status.

At one extreme a single person rules. In the 5th century public slaves forming a cordon with a red-stained rope herded citizens from the agora into the assembly meeting place Pnyxwith a fine being imposed on those who got the red on their clothes.

Source Furthering Democracy by a Tyrant The tyrant, Pisistratus, was able to take power thanks to many things Solon did. Having lost the use of a portion of their land, they were even more vulnerable to subsequent hardships see Aristot.

In the 5th century version of the democracy, the ten annually elected generals were often very prominent, but for those who had power, it lay primarily in their frequent speeches and in the respect accorded them in the assembly, rather than their vested powers.The Athenian institution of democracy emerged in several stages.

This occurred in response to political, social, and economic conditions. As was true elsewhere in the Greek world, the individual city-state (polis) of Athens had once been ruled by kings, but that had given way to an oligarchic government by archons elected from the aristocratic (Eupatrid) families.

The mechanics of Athenian democracy: 5th century BC The system which emerges in the mid-5th century involves citizens in government in a variety of ways. Each has a voice in the highest forum of the nation, the ecclesia or assembly, which meets four times a month on the Pnyx, a flat-topped hill in Athens.

Christopher W. Blackwell, “The Development of Athenian Democracy,” in Adriaan Lanni, ed., “Athenian Law in its Democratic Context” (Center for Hellenic Studies On-line Discussion Series). Republished in C.W. Blackwell, ed., Dēmos: Classical Athenian Democracy (A.

Mahoney and R. Scaife, edd., The Stoa: a consortium for electronic publication in the humanities [funkiskoket.com]) edition of January 24, The Athenian democracy (sometimes called classical democracy) was the democratic system developed in the Greek city-state of Athens – one of the very first known democracies and probably the most important in ancient times.

The central point is that the best human society (utopia) will necessarily be founded on truth and reality. Most profoundly, we can now deduce what reality is, thus for the first time in human history this 'utopian' ideal becomes possible.

The system of democratic government that began to develop in the first decade of the 5th century B.C. in the Ancient Greek city-state of Athens was a direct, rather than representative, democracy, and every adult male citizen could participate. An assembly of citizens and a council, or boule, met on.

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