Aristotle and Law: The Politics of Nomos is a timely and carefully argued book, bringing together the disparate discussions of law in Aristotle’s corpus. George Duke stays close to the text and is clear in his exposition, making this work an excellent foundation for future scholarship. While some readers might have wanted further speculations regarding the various philosophical issues raised and bolder attempts to make coherent Aristotle’s own tensions, we should appreciate Duke’s judgment in recognizing what he can show on the basis of the texts we have. His study is thus extremely useful for new and seasoned scholars of Aristotle’s Politics alike.

For Duke, what unifies Aristotle’s conception of law is its “status as an achievement of practical rationality” applied in political contexts (8), but it needn’t be apprehended as rational by the citizens, which explains why it is often characterized as necessitating force and compulsion (14). Chapter 1...

You do not currently have access to this content.