Political imitation in Plato's Statesman
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In Plato’s Statesman, the Eleatic Visitor claims that the city in which unchanging law rules imitates the true city in which the political expertise of the statesman rules. The imitation, as I argue, lies in the likeness between the agreement about what is just in the two kinds of cities. The agreement that the law is just enables a kind of harmony between the parts, namely the opposing groups of citizens, of the whole city in the city where law rules. Law, in so far as it prescribes what is good for the whole city rather than a part, takes the place of the statesman in this city. The agreement between the opposing parts of the city makes the law effective and so gives unity to the city in imitation of the statesman’s rule.