Utilitarianism ‘On Liberty’ John Stuart Mill

‘On Liberty’ Utilitarianism

‘On Liberty’, The canonical statement of Mill’s utilitarianism can be found in Utilitarianism. This philosophy has a long tradition, although Mill’s account is primarily influenced by Jeremy Bentham and Mill’s father James Mill.

Mill’s famous formulation of utilitarianism is known as the “greatest-happiness principle”. It holds that one must always act so as to produce the greatest aggregate happiness among all sentient beings, within reason. Mill’s major contribution to utilitarianism is his argument for the qualitative separation of pleasures. Bentham treats all forms of happiness as equal, whereas Mill argues that intellectual and moral pleasures are superior to more physical forms of pleasure. Mill distinguishes between happiness and contentment, claiming that the former is of higher value than the latter, a belief wittily encapsulated in the statement that “it is better to be a human being dissatisfied than a pig satisfied; better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied. And if the fool, or the pig, are of a different opinion, it is because they only know their own side of the question.”

Mill defines the difference between higher and lower forms of happiness with the principle that those who have experienced both tend to prefer one over the other. This is, perhaps, in direct contrast with Bentham’s statement that “Quantity of pleasure being equal, push-pin is as good as poetry”, that, if a simple child’s game like hopscotch causes more pleasure to more people than a night at the opera house, it is more imperative upon a society to devote more resources to propagating hopscotch than running opera houses. Mill’s argument is that the “simple pleasures” tend to be preferred by people who have no experience with high art, and are therefore not in a proper position to judge. Mill supported legislation that would have granted extra voting power to university graduates on the grounds that they were in a better position to judge what would be best for society. It should be noted that, in this example, Mill did not intend to devalue uneducated people and would certainly have advocated sending the poor but talented to universities: he believed that education, and not the intrinsic nature of the educated, qualified them to have more influence in government.

The qualitative account of happiness that Mill advocates thus sheds light on his account presented in On Liberty. As Mill suggests in that text, utility is to be conceived in relation to mankind “as a progressive being”, which includes the development and exercise of his rational capacities as he strives to achieve a “higher mode of existence”. The rejection of censorship and paternalism is intended to provide the necessary social conditions for the achievement of knowledge and the greatest ability for the greatest number to develop and exercise their deliberative and rational capacities.

‘On Liberty’ Economic philosophy

Mill’s early economic philosophy was one of free markets. However, he accepted interventions in the economy, such as a tax on alcohol, if there were sufficient utilitarian grounds. He also accepted the principle of legislative intervention for the purpose of animal welfare. Mill originally believed that “equality of taxation” meant “equality of sacrifice” and that progressive taxation penalized those who worked harder and saved more and was therefore “a mild form of robbery”.

Given a tax break to the rich, Mill agreed that inheritance should be taxed. A utilitarian society would agree that everyone should be equal one way or another. Therefore receiving inheritance would put one ahead of society unless taxed on the inheritance. Those who donate should consider and choose carefully where their money goes—some charities are more deserving than others. Considering public charities boards such as a government will disperse the money equally. However a private charity board like a church would disperse the monies fairly to those who are in more need than others.

Later he altered his views toward a more socialist bent, adding chapters to his Principles of Political Economy in defense of a socialist outlook, and defending some socialist causes. Within this revised work he also made the radical proposal that the whole wage system be abolished in favour of a co-operative wage system. Nonetheless, some of his views on the idea of flat taxation remained, albeit in a slightly toned down form.

Mill’s Principles of Political Economy, first published in 1848, was one of the most widely read of all books on economics in the period. As Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations had during an earlier period, Mill’s Principles dominated economics teaching. In the case of Oxford University it was the standard text until 1919. The text that replaced it was written by Cambridge’s Alfred Marshall.

‘On Liberty’ Economic democracy

Mill promoted economic democracy in the capitalist economy whereby labourers would elect members of management. Mill believed that this was necessary to end what he deemed to be dictatorial management of capitalist firms and to establish liberty and equality in the capitalist economy. Mill’s promotion of the right of labourers to elect management has been seen as support for economic corporatism.

Mill’s views on the environment

Mill demonstrated an early insight into the value of the natural world – in particular in Book IV, chapter VI of “Principles of Political Economy”: “Of the Stationary State” in which Mill recognised wealth beyond the material, and argued that the logical conclusion of unlimited growth was destruction of the environment and a reduced quality of life. He concluded that a stationary state could be preferable to neverending economic growth:

I cannot, therefore, regard the stationary state of capital and wealth with the unaffected aversion so generally manifested towards it by political economists of the old school.

If the earth must lose that great portion of its pleasantness which it owes to things that the unlimited increase of wealth and population would extirpate from it, for the mere purpose of enabling it to support a larger, but not a better or a happier population, I sincerely hope, for the sake of posterity, that they will be content to be stationary, long before necessity compel them to it.

English: John Stuart Mill. 19th century Photog...
John Stuart Mill. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Republic Book X


Socrates has already completed the main argument of the Republic, establishing justice and has proven to be valid. He turns to the question of poetry leads humans. Surprising move, banished poets from the city. He has three reasons to believe that poets unhealthy and dangerous. First, pretend to know all sorts of things, but really know nothing. It generally considered aware of what they write, but really do not. Things that treatment cannot be know: these images, far from what is real. Presenting such scenes of the truth of poets, evil souls, depart from the more real to say the least.

Worse still, the images do not imitate the poets present a good part of the soul. The rational soul is peaceful, stable, and it is difficult to imitate or understand. Poets imitate the worst parts, trends that make the characters easily excitable, and colorful. Poetry, of course, appeals to the worst parts of the soul awakens and nourishes and strengthens the basic elements of this new transform part of a sensible energy.

Poetry corrupts even the best minds. He deceives us into sympathy with those who weep too, as the desire to laugh at inappropriate things basic. It sticks well to feel these emotions base effects assistant. We believe there is no shame in engaging in these feelings because we deliver in conjunction with a fictional character and not in our own lives. But the joy we feel these sentiments to engage in the lives of others is transferred to our own lives. When these parts of ourselves have been nurtured and strengthened in the way they can flourish in us when we deal with our own lives. Suddenly, we became the grotesque kind of people we have seen on stage or heard in the epic poems.

The obvious dangers of poetry and Socrates’ sorry from banish poets. Sacrifice aesthetics feels sharp, and said he would be happy to help you return to the city if anyone can make an argument in their defense.

Socrates, the Commission will present a short proof of the immortality of the soul. In principle, the proof is this: X can be destroyed by what is bad for X. What is a poor soul is injustice and other vices. But the injustice and other vices apparently do not destroy the soul, or tyrants, and others are not able to survive for long. So nothing can destroy the soul and the soul is immortal.

When Socrates presented evidence that he can put his final argument in favor of justice. This argument, based on the myth of Er, to receive the reward come afterlife. According to legend, a warrior named is killed in battle, but not really die. He was sent to heaven and made to look all that happens for him to return to the earth and report what he saw. It is an eschatological system that rewards virtue, especially wisdom. For 1000 years, people are either rewarded or punished in heaven to hell for sins or good deeds in their lives. They are then assembled in a common space and forced to choose their next life, animal or human. Life they choose will determine if they are rewarded or punished in the next cycle. Only those who were philosophically in his lifetime, including Orpheus, who choose to be reborn as a swan about to catch the trick, how to choose just life. Everyone else hurtles between happiness and misery with every cycle.


Book X, then, Plato’s philosophy of education bumps based on a comparison of traditional poetry-based education. Plato justified in the philosophy and the philosopher, and now appears to them in relation to its competitors, people who are thinking of a sage and wise, poets.

The myth, with reward and punishment is an argument based on the motivations of the principles of Plato rejected. Glaucon and Adeimantus asked specifically to praise the law without resorting to these factors. Why is doing exactly that?

Allan Bloom suggests that the inclusion of this myth related to the philosophical distinction between virtue and civic virtue. Virtue is the kind of philosophical philosopher, virtue is and what kind of virtue distinguished from the effect of the normal citizen. So far, says Bloom, Plato has shown that under this philosophy is valid in itself. He has not shown that civic virtue is worthy. For Glaucon and Adeimantus, and countless others who are not capable of philosophical virtue, we must give them a reason to pursue their own form of virtue. The contrast between the philosophical and civic virtue in the mind, Plato describes the years thousands of cycles of reward and punishment is just and unjust lives.

However, our understanding of what makes all the useful virtue; their connection with the forms of Plato has sufficiently demonstrated the value of the two kinds of virtues. Under the philosophy may be more useful as it not only mimics the forms, but also directed at others and with them, but civic virtue is equally valid, since it involves making the shape of your life by establishing order and harmony in his soul. Bloom, however, has another plausible hypothesis to explain why Plato understands the myth of Er, and is consistent with our understanding of the value of justice. The myth of Err, Bloom explains, illustrates once again the need for philosophy. Civic virtues are not enough. Philosophers only life they know how to choose good news, because only they understand the soul and understand what makes a life good and bad. The others, who do not have this understanding, sometimes choose between good and evil at times.

Fluctuate back and forth between the lives of good and bad. Since each soul is responsible for choosing his own life, each person must take full responsibility to be fair or unfair. We have deliberately chosen to be unfair because of our ignorance of what makes a soul just or unjust. Ignorance, then, is the only real sin, and philosophy, the only remedy.

Criticism Notes

Aristotle’s Criticism On Plato’s Theory Of Forms

Introduction and overview

Humans are curious by nature. They have sought to explore the reality of their creation. All religious doctrines, philosophical and scientific theories are the result of curiosity about the man. Journey to investigate the reality is quite old, but has remained as the history of Greek civilization; it seems that the starting point. The Greek philosophers, long before the birth of Socrates, had tried to explore reality. They tried to understand the real behavior of the universe. They used the sensual and mental faculties, but some of the behaviors exceeded the capacity of their senses.

The most important of these questions was that of permanence and change. It was amazing how their minds by the word permanent and changing?

Why the word perceived by the senses seems to be changing and the word perceived by the mind seems to be permanent. That is real and what is appear in both directions? (1)

These issues have attracted the attention of all the pre-Socratic philosophers, but they could not give a satisfactory answer. For example, Parmenides believed that everything was forever, and the change was only an illusion. Heraclitus, on the other hand took the view that everything is in constant flux. (2)

These questions confuse the sense of Plato, too, and so these questions and the answers were unsatisfactory reason, the Platonic theory of forms. Gale says the morphology as a fine was the first logical and sensible answer to the questions and the stability of change. (3)

To answer these questions and develop a system for understanding reality, Plato divides existence into two realms: the realm of the material and the transcendent realm of forms.

Divided into two kingdoms solved the problem of permanence and change. We see a different world with different objects with the mind what we do through the senses. The material world perceived by the senses that are changing. That is the realm of forms perceived by the mind is permanent and unchanging. This is the real world; change the world is but an imperfect image of this world.

  1. Plato: An Introduction by Paul Friedlander, p. 127
  2.  The Cambridge companion to early Greek philosophy A.A. Long, p. 88
  3.  In Ideas: Aristotle’s criticism of the theory of Plato’s ideas by Gail Fine, p. 29

In the view of Gale’s Platonic forms were:

1. Transcendent – the forms are not located in space and time. For example, there is no specific place or time where forms such as redness exist.

2. Pure – the forms only exemplify one property. Material objects are impure; they combine a number of properties such as darkness, roundness and hardness in a single object. One way, as the circularity, is an example of a single property.

3. Archetypes – the forms are archetypes, so they are perfect examples of goods that are examples. The modules are perfect models, in which all material objects based. The form of redness, for example, is red, and all the red objects are simply incomplete, copies of the unclean in perfect shape, and redness.

4. Finally, Real – are the ultimate forms of real community, not material objects? All material objects are copies or images of some series of forms, their reality becomes only the forms.

5. Causes – The tables are the causes of all things. (1) They provide an explanation of why things are as it is and (2) they are the source or origin of those things.

6. Systematically Interconnected – Forms includes a system that leads down to the form of more general successes of joint over more objectives over subjective. This systematic structure reflected in the structure of the dialectical process by which we come to the knowledge of forms. (4)



Aristotle believed that Plato’s theory of forms with its two separate worlds, failed to explain what it was supposed to explain. In other words, he failed to explain how could be sustained and the order in this world and how we can have objective knowledge of this world. By separating the rich forms of the material world, Plato makes it impossible to explain how rich mussels objectivity and permanence possible in the material world. Objectivity and permanence of the realm of the forms do not explain the material world, because the connection between the two worlds is so difficult to understand. Aristotle and the Aristotelian philosophers used logic to criticize the theory. Gail fine went to the extreme to say:

The theory of a proposal form is unnecessary. There is no reason to divide the world into two different worlds to explain the objectivity and continuity of our experience. (6)

Aristotle developed the general critique of the other two specific objections:

1. The obscurity of the notion imitation:

According to Plato, the material objects involved to imitate the forms. It is a virtue in this regard; the realm of forms, material objects and the order is palpable. However, Aristotle says, is almost impossible to explain what his role is, or is an imitation. Properties, the shapes are (eternal, immutable, transcendent, etc.) are all-incompatible with material objects. For example how a white object can be said, or to participate to the copy in the form of candor? Is the form of whiteness white itself? How can there be without a candor, which is white? What is a white object said to be a form of candor in common? It seems that the metaphor of imitation or participation in these cases seems to break down, because the special features that Plato in this form. The only connection between the kingdom and the forms of the material world then disintegrates. Forms cannot explain any of the material worlds.

2. The third man argument:

Plato himself in his later dialogues first gave this argument. It linked to the first objection, but it is a more technical to climb the biggest problem with the theory of forms. The similarity between two material objects can be explained by Plato in the form of their joint participation in a common form. A red book and a red flower, for example, are similar in effect to be copies of the form of redness. Because they are copies of this form, they also resemble the shape. However, the similarity between the red object and the form of flushing must also explained using a different form. What shape are a red object and the form of redness in both copies to account for their similarity? When someone proposes a modified form in two copies of such things, we can always ask them to explain the similarity of form and objects. It will always need a different form.

The concept of imitation or copy of the formal teaching then runs into logical difficulties. Morphology really nothing to explain the similarity between objects in a different form every time you need more than the suggested one. Explains the similarity between the human and the shape of a man, is a third very to a man, and this always requires a different format. Explanation for the similarity of the original is never given; it postponed to the next level.

This criticism opens the door to new criticism. As there was no logical connection between the transcendent form and the material world, so many critics raised a question concerning the epistemological dimensions of this theory. Plato believed that true knowledge is knowledge of the shape and destiny of a great man to reach the realm of forms. However, it is not mention of how to reach this kingdom. Since it was above this material world, so if there was a way to get to this realm of life or death could lead to a man in this ideal kingdom. The idea was very abstract, and it was not clear enough too accepted, un-criticized.

Plato did not write most of his subjects, portraits, and most of the written work not maintained. Pheodo was the first book on this theory, and then the Republic, has explained a little ‘. However, this explanation was too little, so the theory clears. Thus, the explanation was that in theory carried out by commentators. This has become a major source of criticism of this theory. The criticism of Aristotle, and Aristotle, philosophers, according to this theory, are the most explanatory. Plato had written more, or of his books kept, there may have been that strong criticism of this theory. Even then, the theory was powerful enough to share the philosophy and philosophers into two parts. However, a group of philosophers does not agree with the content of the theory but even they accept that this theory provided human beings with s new way to think and perceive the universe.

Criticism Notes

Aristotle’s Concept Of Tragedy

“The Poetics” is primarily about the Tragedy that is considered the highest form of poetry. Abercrombie says:

“But the theory of Tragedy developed with such vision and understanding and becomes the kind of theory of literature.”

Aristotle shows that imitation is the common basis of all the fine arts, which differ in their imitation of the media, objects of imitation and how to imitate. Poetry differs from music in the middle of the imitation. Epic poetry and dramatic poetry differs based on imitation way. Dramatic poetry is itself divided into tragic or comic based on the objects of imitation. Tragedy imitates men better and comedy as worse than they are. Thus, Aristotle establishes the uniqueness of the tragedy.

Aristotle traces the origin and evolution of poetry. Previously, the poetry was of two kinds. There were “lambs” or “abusive”, on the one hand, that has evolved in satirical poems, and “hymns” in the gods or “praise” on the large, on the other side, which has evolved into epic poetry or heroic. Heroic poetry of tragedy developed, and out of the satirical comedy. Both epic and tragedy mimic serious subjects in a kind of poetry grandiose, but they differ in one kind of mimics to Epic, both suspects’ chorus and dialogue. The saga is long and varied, but the tragedy has a greater concentration and efficiency. Missing epic music, theater made the presentation and unity of action tragedy a.

“All the parts of an epic are included in Tragedy; but those of Tragedy are not all of them to be found in the Epic.”

Aristotle has an assessment of the nature and function of the tragedy. He defines tragedy as:

“the imitation of an action, serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude, in a language beautified in different parts with different kinds of embellishment, through actions and not narration, and through scenes of pity and fear bringing about the ‘Catharsis’ of these emotions.”

The definition separates tragedy from other poetic forms. First, the objects of imitation are serious to do otherwise Comedy imitates non-serious. ‘Serious’ means important, weighty. Tragedy on the basis of a second manner different from that epic tells and does not represent the actions. Thirdly, the medium is different from that opera. It employs a variety of decorations.

Aristotle regards the plot as the soul of a tragedy. Tragedy imitates “actions” and the plot consists of a sequence of events logical and inevitable. The action is as a whole. It has a beginning, middle and end.

The tragic plot must have a certain size or “length”. “Magnitude” means that the “size”. It should be long enough to allow the change from happiness to misery, but not too long to be forgotten before the end. Action too short cannot be considered good and beautiful parts are not clearly visible. The parts must be connected to each other and everything. It must be an ‘organic’ whole.

Aristotle divides the tragic plot “simple” and “complex.” The simple plot change in the fortunes of the hero is successful and the episode of Discovery, while the complex plot involves one or two. The episode is the change in the fortunes of the hero, and the discovery is a change from ignorance to knowledge. Aristotle rather complex plots their jumps, catches the eye and leads to the tragic function more efficiently. It is episodic plot, lack of probability and necessity, in the worst of all.

Aristotle places great emphasis on the need and the likelihood of the impact of a tragedy. This implies that there should be no external events and incidents. They inevitably succeed. No event or character must be redundant. They introduced the events should be expected in the circumstances.

By various embellishments in various parts, Aristotle means verse and song. Tragedy imitates the verse in the dialogue and singing in choric parties. Verse and song beautify and give pleasure. But Aristotle was not considered essential to the success of a tragedy.

Aristotle emphasizes that the function of tragedy is to present scenes of “fear and pity” and create a catharsis of these emotions. Suffice it to say that the catharsis of pity and fear, he believes their return to the right proportions as the desired “golden means.”


Aristotle lists six training or part of the tragedy, the plot, character, dictionary, I thought, spectacle and song. Two of these parts relate to the medium of imitation, one to the manner of imitation, and three to the object of imitation. Choral song found share of tragedy. Performance is more to do with stagecraft than writing poetry.

“Thought” is the power to say what for what is appropriate for the occasion. It is the language that gives us the thoughts and feelings of the characters. The language of tragedy is unusually expressive. Language tragedy “must be clear, and it should not be evil.” It must be grand and elevated with familiar and current words. ‘Rare’ and ‘unfamiliar’ words must be set in wisely to impart elevation.

Aristotle emphasizes four qualities essential to the characterization. First, the characters must be good but not perfect. Evil characters could be entering if required by the plot. Second, be suitable. Should have the characteristics of the profession or class to which they belong. Third, it must have seemed. For the likeness, this means that the characters must be living comparable. Fourth, there should be consistency in development. There should be no sudden and strange character.

Aristotle’s ideal tragic hero sets should not be all good or all bad. It is an ordinary man, the weakness and virtues, as, leaning over the side of good than harm, in a position of eminence, and the collapse of the hill, not because of willful sin, but due to some misjudgments, in turn, leads to a catharsis of the emotions of pity and fear.

Plots must arouse feelings of pity and fear, which is a function of tragedy. The tragic story is that they do not want to show () a perfectly good man moving from misery to happiness (b) the bad man will rise from misery to happiness (c) a very bad man has fallen from happiness into misery.

By comparing the size of the plot and characters, Aristotle is quite specific that the plot is more important than character. He even said that there could be a tragedy without character, but not without intrigue or plot.


Aristotle points out that one of the three units that unity of action; it is against the multiplicity of actions because it weakens the tragic effect. There may be many events, but must be related to each other, and they must all be conducive to an end. For a unit of time, Aristotle mentions it only once in relation to the dramatic action. Comparison of the epic and tragedy, he writes:

“Tragedy tries, as far as possible, to live within a single revolution of the sun, or only slightly to exceed it, whereas the epic observes no limits in its time of action.”

According to Aristotle, the end of poetry is pleasure, and right next to the pleasure of tragedy. Proper aesthetic pleasure can be possible only when the requirements of morality are satisfied. Verses and rhymes to enhance the pleasure of poetry. Peripeteia and Anagnorisis increase the operation seductive power. Pure pleasure to use the results of our feelings and thoughts about the tragic action.

These are the main features of the Aristotelian theory of tragedy. Aristotle knew only Greek tragedy. His conclusions based solely on the drama, which was familiar, and often his views are not universally applicable. In his opinion, could be questioned, but their history is the story of the tragedy.

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Criticism Notes

Aristotle’s theory of imitation

Aristotle’s term “imitation”; Plato was the first to use the word in relation to poetry, but Aristotle in a specific sense breathed again. Imitation is no longer considered poetic imitation, but is considered an act of imaginative creation in which the poet drew his material from the world of phenomena, it is something new. In the opinion of Aristotle, the principle of imitation linking poetry with other arts and is the common basis of all the arts. It is different to the category of fine arts from the other arts. Although Plato equates poetry with painting, Aristotle compares with the music. It is not a representation of slaves in the appearance of things, but it becomes a representation of the passions and emotions of men who are imitated by the music. Aristotle and his theory expanded the reach of imitation. The poet does not imitate the surface of things, but actually integrated into the interior. In the first chapter of the Poetics, Aristotle says:

“Epic poetry and Tragedy, Comedy also and Dithyrambic poetry, as also the music of the flute and the lyre in most of their forms, are in their general conception modes of imitation. They differ however, from one another in three respects – their medium, the objects and the manner or mode of imitation, being in each case distinct.”

Tool for the poet and painter are different. A imitates, through form and color, and the other through language, rhythm and harmony. Musician imitates, through rhythm and harmony. So, poetry is closer to the music. In addition, the way a poet can not only be storytelling, as epic or a description of the activities through the drama of the genre. The poem is a dramatic distinction between tragedy and comedy in the same way that mimics the human being better or worse.

Aristotle says that the poetic imitation objects are “men in action”. The poet represents the greatest men of them. He can make men better in real life is based on documentation submitted by the history and legend, and no living person. The poet selects and organizes the material and creates a reality. He brings order out of chaos. Irrational or accidental erasure and attention has been focused on solid and significant. So it gives a true ideal of its kind. His mind is not tied to reality:

“It is not the function of the poet to relate what has happened but what may happen – according to the laws of probability or necessity.”

The story tells us what really happened, the poetry of what can happen. Poetry tends to express the universal, the particular story. So, he shows the superiority of poetry over history. Poet, freed from the tyranny of facts, it will take a larger view of things or a general, in particular, represents the universal, and then shares the philosopher want the ultimate truth. He so identified with poetry, philosophy, and shows that both is means to a higher truth. The word “universal” Aristotle means:

“How can a person of a certain nature or type of will, on a particular occasion, to speak or act according to the law of probability or necessity.”

The poet continues to increase, especially public. He examines in particular, and discovers the principles of general application. She exceeds the boundaries of life without violating the essential laws of human nature. Elsewhere, Aristotle says, “Art imitates nature”. By Nature, did not mean that the outside world was created things, but the “creative force, generating principle of the universe”. Art produces mainly within the process, the physical energy to process, acts, events, and a situation which is included to the extent that arise from within, an act of will, or do some activity of thought or feeling. She makes men, “as they should be”.

The poet imitates the nature of the creative process, but the objects are the “men in action”. Now the ‘action’ may be ‘external’ or ‘internal’. The operation of the soul may be caused by what happens to a man. This brings the human experience, emotions and passions in a poetic imitation. According Aristotle’s theory, moral properties, the properties, the nature of permanent, temporary feelings of the mind and feelings are all the elements of action, and imitation in a poetic way. Poetry can imitate men better or worse than they are in real life, or to emulate as they really are. The tragedy and the epic men represent a heroic scale, better than what they are, and the comedy of men is a smaller type, are the worst … what Aristotle discuss a third option means that poetry is not meant to photographic realism in this context, RA Scott-James points out that:

“Aristotle knew nothing of the “realistic” or “fleshy” school of fiction – the school of Zola or of Gissing.”

Abercrombie, however, Aristotle defends not to discuss the third alternative. He said:

“It can only imagine life as it is, but the interesting thing is to imagine life as it could be, and is, therefore, that the impulse and imagination to inspire poetry.”

Aristotle in his theory of imitation answers responsibility of Plato that poetry is an imitation of the “ghost shadows”, three times removed from the truth, and the poet seduces us with lies. Plato condemns poetry, which of course poets has no idea of ​​the truth. The phenomenal world is not reality, but a copy of reality in the mind of the Supreme Court. The poet imitates the objects and phenomena in the world that are shaded and unreal. Poetry is “the mother of lies”.

“Objects which in them we view with pain, we are happy to contemplate when reproduced with fidelity minutes, as the forms of the vilest animals and cadavers”.

The real and the ideal point of view of Aristotle, not opposite, the ideal is real, and deprived of the possibility of an accident, purified form of reality. And this is all the greater the ‘reality’ that must be poetic imitation. The idealization is obtained through the sale of real everything is accidental, transitory and, in particular. Poetry imitates it an ideal and universal, “an idealized representation of a character, emotion, and action – in mind manifest” as poetic truth is therefore higher than the historical truth. Poetry is more philosophical, to promote a better understanding of philosophy itself.

So Aristotle with success and, finally, set aside the equivalent of Plato, and if the defense of poetry, which has since been in use for the lovers of poetry as a justification for the Muse. It breathes new life and soul of the concept of poetic imitation, and has shown that it is a reality, the creative process.