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Classics and the Founding Fathers
Start Date: 2/24/2015Start Time: 4:30 PM
End Date: 2/24/2015End Time: 6:00 PM

Event Description:
Tuesday, February 24, 4:30 p.m., Trotter 301, Sydnor Roy, '02, Visiting Assistant Professor of Classics, Haverford College will speak on "The Founding Fathers on Natural Aristocracy and the Problem of Wealth: Classical Influences?" When our Classical sources, such as Aristotle and Polybius, write about the mixed constitution, they imagine it as a balance between the people, the aristocracy (defined by both heredity and wealth), and an individual exercising kingly or executive power. This theorization came about from a long history of tension both in the Greek city states and in Rome between the social classes. The American constitution also represents a mixed constitution, but the balance of powers is more about the separation of powers than the balancing of the social classes, but we see in their writings an acknowledgement of the imbalances created by wealth. This talk will explore this shift in conception of the mixed constitution by bringing out how the Founding Fathers, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton in particular, thought about and applied the idea of aristocracy and wealth from their study of the Classics.
Location Information:
*Swarthmore College - Trotter
Room: Trotter 301
Contact Information:
Name: Deb Sloman
Phone: x8165
Email: dsloman1@swarthmore.edu
photo of Sydnor Roy
Open To
The Public

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