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Part 1 Question 1 Essay

825 words - 4 pages

Understanding political activity is fundamental for Jouvenel and is discussed in both of his books, “The Pure Theory of Politics” and “Sovereignty”. Political activity is all about dynamic relationships between people that are constantly moving. Due to the fact that, “every political situation is complex and original,” (PT, xv) Jouvenel’s purpose is to come down to the simplest phenomenon necessary to understand political activities. The phenomenon is, “essential a relationships between individuals,” (PT, xvii). Because political activity is hard to explain he refers to examples of political situations by Thucydides and Shakespeare. Even though those are very old example he states that, “the very fact that these could—with the advantages of inimitable expression—serve as substitutes for contemporary instances, testifies that political activity remains fundamentally the same,” (PT, xix). It is important to avoid temporary event because we are based in nature, simply because we are too close to the situation to be able to analyze it. However, since fundamental political activity has not changed, it is ok, and imperative, for us to look back on the works of Thucydides and Shakespeare. The context of political activities may have changed, but the essential events have not.
Since political actions derive from the relationship between men, the action arises when men move men; and since we are dealing with men moving men, it is vital to stress the importance of the social setting. Subsequently because it is social, politics is dynamic. “However important it is to describe a configuration deemed static, to recommend attitudes wholesome and virtuous, it is important also to foresee what men will do and what will happen,” (PT, 7). Politics is not static, it is always in motion. While politics is whenever ones conduct is apt to bring about the results he desires, political actions is whenever the desired results of one man requires the help of another man who through his actions has excepted the will of the first man and been moved to fulfill the mover’s objective, (S, 18-19). So then any action taken to rally the wills of others is a political action. Men are able to influence the wills and actions of other men, and thus are moving them in the intended way of the mover. “So far we have regarded action of a political kind as instrumental in relation to some purpose or other. Every purpose, we have seen, whatever its...

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