Athens not a model to follow.

Essay by dells2High School, 10th gradeA+, January 2006

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For thousands of years civilizations have tried to achieve the "perfect society" and tried to convince others to use it as a model. Some successfully achieved their goal while others sadly failed in this attempt and Athens is one of these societies. It had tried to make the best possible society by inserting in it the finest government and implanting pride in its' citizens. For some time Athens flourished and created an Empire from its people's pride but is that enough? Is there something behind this ideal picture? Athens may be a city full of excellent qualities but its' system has various flaws in it. Sometimes one must look below the surface and in Athens there is more. Athens is not the ideal model for societies because of its hypocrisy, and excessive pride that blind it from the reality of life.

When a close analysis is made in the Athenian society, hypocrisy is a present but buried factor that reveals the real face of Athenian politics.

Hypocrisy is found in the depth of Athenian government; their democracy is a fake one. Pericles defines democracy as being an " administration that favors the many instead of the few" (Pericles). However, it was known that "the whole country was in the hands of a few persons" (Part 2 Athenian constitution) and that "franchise was given to all those who could furnish themselves with military equipment" (Part 4 constitution). Therefore, all those who got franchise were rich because they would have needed money to furnish themselves with the military equipment needed. How can this be called a democracy if only rich MEN are included? Aristotle, an Athenian, considers, in one of his texts criticizing Sparta, that since " many things were managed by women...[and] men long away from home...the influence of Lacedaemonian...