The Concept of Justice in Plato’s Republic and Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics

Jan Janda

The paper compares Plato’s concept of justice, as presented in the Republic, with Aristotle’s view, as outlined in Book V of the Nicomachean Ethics. Our comparison is limited to two principal questions: (1) What phenomenal region provided Plato and Aristotle with the ground for an inquiry into justice both as a principle and as a moral virtue? (2) What was the content of their respective concepts of justice? Even a relatively brief comparison suffices to show that the two positions were separated by fundamental differences.