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Although the word democracy in Greek means rule by the people there is much disagreement universally over the precise requirements of democracy The Athenian Ecclesiastic Model 1Ecclesia composed of all male citizens who met 40 times a year to decide everything 2Weaknesses of this model Exclusivity because there were three slaves for every two Athenians and because women were excluded Scale because direct democracy only works for very small populations Clisthenes instituted reforms in Athens between 508 and 501 BCE He is the founder of democracy Although property ownership remained a requirement to participate in the decision-making process he enlarged the citizen rolls diminished the power of the aristocracy and elevated the role of the assembly He divided Athens and the surrounding area into precincts called demes each of which elected its own officers This move weakened the power of the aristocracy A council of 500 of these officers was responsible for general government duties such as receiving emissaries maintaining finances and preparing legislative proposals for the Assembly to pass or reject The Ecclesia or Assembly was comprised of all adult male citizens It met about 40 times annually and decided everything Isocrates 436 BC to 338 BC He believed that a Pan-Hellenic campaign against Persia and the conquest of Asia Minor would be the solution to the economic social and political problems that had brought poverty and civil war to the Greek cities ever since the Peloponnesian War Plato 428 BC to 347 BC 1Basic Philosophy All things emanate from an unseen source of Good which we can comprehend through philosophical contemplation Our environment is the mere image of reality so the study of our environment is pointless Therefore only philosophical contemplation has value 2Social Evolution Society begins as
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