Democracy DB In the world many societies are switching to democracies from the demand from the people in that area. One of the first democracies ever was in Athens, Greece. Even though they were the first democracy ever assembled, questions arose as to how democratic they really were. Opinions vary, but although Athens became more democratic over time, because of a series of reforms, it still was still more UN- democratic then democratic.
Therefore there power was too limited to be considered a true democracy due to the fact that poor people didn’t participate in government, ND that only a small amount of people were considered citizens. In order to further analyze the issue, we can ask poor people their thoughts and their participation in government. Another source would be written history of the city, so they can see if the people were more satisfied under a democracy or a non-democratic state. Although they were more UN-democratic they did show basic signs of democracy.
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During the time of Athenian democracy Perishes was one of the major rulers. He said that they were a model for the entire world to follow because power was for the many rather then the few (Doc 5). One should proceed with caution while absorbing this information because these words were said during a funeral service. He might of exaggerated so they can make the families of the dead feel pride, and that there family members didn’t die in vain. This Society was also considered a direct democracy were citizens vote on issues.
One example of this was when the citizens voted on ostracism of others in the societies. They voted to ostracize people when they felt they were acting toward the promotion of tyranny also promoting democracy. As time went on the made many reforms to further push towards encroach helping slightly, but still not making them a true democracy. One of the first things they changed was the amount of participation in government. They increased representation to 500 people and 10 tribes (Doc 6).
One should be careful when reading this, however, because the writer of his was Herodotus. He is considered to be the father of lies, and usually only wrote things based on interest and not on fact. So therefore this information might be skewed in some way. Finally there were the changes from Solon. As Aristotle said before this Athens was an Oligarchy but after Solons reform it started to shape into a democracy (Doc 3). Solon got rid of debt slavery and allowed poor people to be represented ion government. These reforms pushed to shape Athenian democracy.
Although these reforms pushed Athens toward democracy, they were still more UN-democratic. In a democratic society the more should have power instead of the few. This includes the majority of free, poor men as said by Aristotle (Doc 4). If this is what makes up a democracy then can you really call a society a democracy if only of people participate (Doc 8). This meaner that only the rich have the power to vote, which make it a kind of Oligarchy. Under solon poor people were given the option to take part in government, but that doesn’t mean they did.
When you are a poor man living on a farm how can you spend time in government and work on reform when you have watch your crop by yourself. This problem stopped most poor people from participating essentially giving all the power to the rich once again (Doc 7). This document could be skewed due to the fact that Xenophobe was from the upper society, and was in no position to make statements on behalf of the poor. Finally the ostracism of people from there ways is not a democratic thing at all (Doc 1).
For a society to be considered a democracy everyone must be equal under law and in government, but if you are banishing people for no reason then can you really be a democracy, proving that Athens was more UN-democratic the democratic. Despite showing many signs of democracy like citizens voting and by further improving it by a series of reforms that removed debt slavery, Athens was more UN-democratic then democratic. This in fact due to that only a citizen could vote, which was only 15% of their total population leaning towards more of an oligarchy then a democracy.