Gracchi: Socrates Analysis

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However, going back earlier in time, we question why was the Gracchi allowed to have such authority and audacity to challenge the powers of the senate in the first place? Why, for Athens, such an influential nation at that time was able to rise to power but yet unable to make the right decisions to protect itself from threat? Although from previous discussion, the reasons might seem entirely different, however upon closer inspection, it might not be so dissimilar after all. A possible answer to both earlier questions could be due to the rise of populism. At the earlier stages of demokratia, democracy was still limited and the voices of common people were still far more inferior to that of the aristocrats. Pericles reforms however, provided the masses the chance to be…show more content…
More power was now placed into the hands of the commons through Pericles reforms, coupled with previous reforms by Cleisthenes where the council was greatly enlarged from 400 to 500 people to allow greater public or even the entire city’s involvement in political affairs. This idea of equality for all is certainly welcoming, but on hindsight, is it a good idea to give so much power to those who know nothing about governing a nation? Plato certainly disagrees. With his analogy of the ship, he suggests that the state required skilled leaders to navigate the nation.5 Governing a country was an art, a skill that had to be honed. The leaders needed to be well educated in matters of the law, military, economics, current affairs, so on and so forth. Common people are ill-informed and incompetent in running a state. Without the inclination to gain relevant knowledge, their ignorant selves unknowingly allow their heart to govern their heads, unable to stick to one good decision. As a result, they make rather short-sighted, selfish decisions and tend to favour demagogues who charms them with sweet
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