The Politics of Passion
Politics is serious business. According to Aristotle, “the main concern of politics is to engender a certain character in the citizens and to make them good and disposed to perform noble actions.” But some political leaders seek to manipulate passions and prejudices, rather than appealing to reason and pursuing a noble end. The ancient Greeks called such leaders “demagogues.” In this week’s episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Charles Zug of the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs discusses the history of demagogues in American politics. Zug’s discussion is at once philosophical and practical, examining the nature of demagogues, as well as how and when they have appeared in American life. This fascinating talk was held at the University of Texas, Austin.
Image: National Gallery of Art via Wikimedia Commons