Interpretations of critically important texts in political philosophy from Greek antiquity to modern times on the tension between human excellence and equality and its possible resolution.
Is it possible to reconcile human excellence with a dedication to equality? Equality and Excellence in Ancient and Modern Political Philosophy explores the meaning, conflict, and potential resolution of the tension between human excellence and equality in the thought of philosophers from Greek antiquity to modern times. Each chapter is devoted to the thought of a particular thinker, and the chapters are arranged chronologically. Interpretations offered here rely on close readings of the major texts by critically important thinkers from Plato, Aristotle and Xenophon in antiquity to a broad range of modern thinkers from Spinoza to Rawls.
Steven Frankel is Professor of Philosophy at Xavier University. He is coeditor (with Martin D. Yaffe) of Civil Religion in Modern Political Philosophy: Machiavelli to Tocqueville. John Ray is Associate Professor of Political Science at Xavier University. He is coeditor (with Steven Frankel) of French Studies: Literature, Culture and Politics.
"This comprehensive volume combines good writing, a sensitivity to texts leavened by an appreciation of enduring human questions, and an admirable resistance to ideological readings of the Western political tradition. Connecting philosophical and scholarly concerns to common life, it shines impressive light on the persistent tensions, affinities, and competing demands of equality and excellence in human nature and in decent and free societies." — Daniel J. Mahoney, author of The Idol of Our Age: How the Religion of Humanity Subverts Christianity