THE MIDDLE AGES

THE MIDDLE AGES

shift from the secular to the divine

By the end of Roman Empire, the secularism affected ancient Greek cosmology, epistemology and art. They began to lose their effects. This event was occurred because of many reasons like frightening of barbaric raids or less controls of empire. People started to turn for comfort and they believed to be all-knowing all- powerful and all good. According to many of them, god lived in otherworld as pure and beautiful. This change exerted an effect on philosophy art and architecture theory.

Neo-Platonism

The Neoplatonic School of philosophy changed the mean of Plato’s philosophy for developing more equal version with the new mystical spirit. According to Plato’s theory, transcendental world of pure forms cannot be seen in senses and phenomenal world of physical senses can be seen by the senses.

This new concept is understandable. True reality is not complicated. However Plato where he had given access to the transcendental realm through rational thinking, neo-Platonists trusted the power of reason. They needed to find another route to the transcendental realm.

For Plato, the unique source of philosophy is the One that is beyond all conception and knowledge. One occurred nous, nous occurred soul which is mean human soul and soul created physical world which includes human body.

This movement works in two ways, one of them is these levels of reality emanate from, and then return to the one. According to the Plato, they return to the one in two ways; reincarnation and mystical intuition.

For explaining mystical intuition, Plato developed a new knowledge which would affect many post-medieval theorists; however they would not have agreed that cosmological system was not based on it. Because the natural world and man are weak copying of the divine one from which they derive, they have a within themselves a piece or an echo of the divine. So if one thinks either of these with night meditative frame of mind one will finally discover the essential character of the one.

Plato assumed that art only imperfectly copies of nature, which in turn only imperfectly copies the ideal forms.

 

Early Christian philosophy

 

At the same with borning Neo-Platonism, there were some studies consequently it was occurred called Christian church. At first glance it was looked like an informal sect, after it dominated the other sects. It became the Roman empires sect with its features that it was well-organized and self-assured.  It occurred the orthodoxy by accusation the other religions.

Christian cosmology can be seen as a logical development of Neo-Platonism. Christianity was focused on the physical world and the god like the other earliest thinking. It was not interested in real life and its interest was mostly about eternity and it provided some concepts about it. Christianity described eternity and life differently. They showed the god as an intelligent spirit which was influenced all over the world. These concepts occurred diminished forms however it had been strong in the source of it, one. Everything in universe was active because of universal force like the view of ancient Greek organic analogy. People know how to direct the world’s principles because this organization is the part of human being. For example, people can influence what influences them. God created the world and directed with rules. According the organic analogy, Christianity created a temporary analog for creator and created. Knowledge of ultimate reality and self fate completely depended on them and the god which was out of their worlds.

When people understood ultimate reality came from universe’s itself and rules understandable by people, they began to trust their understandable power. In the ancient times, it was posited that people did not have enough power as understanding universe. Knowledge that used and known by people was gave with the help of god. Ancient people studied physical world, their knowledge and truth for knowing universal truth. Medieval people benefited from doctrines to examine truth. Problem of ancient epistemology that how people know the truth disappeared.

 Religious interests and physical nature disappeared completely. Although in the ancient cultures it was believed that god and fate could be controlled, in the middle age it was understood that there was nothing to control the god.

 


THE GREEK REVOLUTION IN PHILOSOPHY

THE GREEK REVOLUTION IN PHILOSOPHY

 

Between the sixth and fourth centuries BC, some ideas were transformed about art, architecture, cosmology etc. from the Greeks. These are workings to improve life standarts and fine arts. Moreover the Greeks invented the democracy and worked on science and all of them composed the characteristics of the Greek revolution.

 

Greeks’ differences are in terms of breaking tradition, looking for reason, not thinking the world in an abnormal abstract way and finding science. I think we can say the Greek revolution is an awakening for the true facts of reality and this is the description of the Greek revolution.

 

Thales(630 BC-545 BC) the Ionian philosopher is so important person for revolution because he offered the first material description of nature by reducing all physical objects and events to one material cause.His world idea’s elements are body, soul and mind. The comments of Thales’ cosmology about the relationship between man-nature & body-soul and mind.

 

The distinction of Pythagoreans is about soul’s place in the material world. Pytagoras (?572BC-?497BC) is a philosopher who improved a distinction. His new distriction which named ‘malter and form’ in geometry.

 

Socrates’ student, Plato, improved a view into a complete system of philosophy. Plato’s idea is comprising with Heraclitus’ and the sophists’. His world description consisted of  two things-an existential realm of physical objects & the realm which can be seen with the senses-.He also thought to find connection between the mind and the forms in the human soul.

 

Aristotle (384BC-322BC) has been known as Plato’s student and workings about to solve the problems of the theory of ideal forms. His study type is considering true knowledge to be knowledge of form just like Plato.

 

In conclusion, all of these philosophers’ workings and thoughts are even nowadays in our lifes and another thing is Aristotle and Plato has some same thoughts however they have got differences. In one of them you can find yourself and see the ideal seems of the world and the other you can see the more down-to-earth realities.

 

 

 

 

 

SOURCES

  • M. Gelnter. Sources of Architectural Forms. pp: 44-54
  • B. Russel. History of Western Philosophy. pp: 3-301
  • B.Magee. The Great Philosophers. Dialogue 1(Platon) and Dialogue2(Aristotle). pp: 12-54

 

 

THE DRAMA of LOCAL POLITICS

THE DRAMA of LOCAL POLITICS

Empowerment: Ethnic and Racial Changes:

 

For the first thing, local politics is mostly characterized by the economic elites, however it has also dramatic dimension which includes struggle, conflict and coalition building and etc… Additionally, the backgrounds of local politicians are mostly identified immigrant originated. In later times, Irish, Jews and Italian become adept of political control. In addition to this change in empowerment, most recently the population of central cities changes. For example, minority groups become majorities. For the last thing, these changes contain a struggle for political control domination where the main effect is voting power.

 

Social Movement:

 

To begin with, social movements include an organization created by the individuals for making an impress on local government. In other words, in the time the constituencies have defined demands, they encounter to make demands on local government for structural change (Castells, 1983) these movements are mobilized around the issues of welfare rights in the past. For example, these social movements can point the basic issues like rent control. To illustrate that “poor people’s movement” (Pivan and Cloward, 1977) is an organization that supports the parts working class against the local government. Lastly, this is also an example of the main characteristics of social movement because the demanded change is directed to local government instead the business community.

Suburban Social Movements:

 

Firstly, suburbs are the other places where the social movements also occur. The needs are demanded in suburbs for the common case of neighborhood organization for; traffic control, development controls and tax revolts.

In the cases considered as the struggle for the traffic controls, the residents mostly need for example, stop signs or traffic lights or something like these… and they demand these from the city hall.

There is another case named growth control movements. This is an issue that mobilized suburbian residents across subdivisions are that of “growth control”. In other words, the larger the suburban area is the more problems occur due to the needs of traffic, pollution, crowdedness and so on. This uncontrolled growth affects the quality of the first-settled people’s life in a bad way that they have difficulties to satisfy the needs. As a result of this growth control organization, there occurs a restructuring of land use that is named “up-zoning”. For the last thing, despite the reducing growth pressures, many communities prefer this growth controls.

Last is case is tax revolts that is related to the demands of homeowners for tax relief. This something affects both the local suburban jurisdictions but also the majority of residents who are regardless of class.

In brief, not only in cities but also in suburbs, local politics are responsible for supplying to people a life that has a quality and a tax that is limited. Otherwise, social movements spring up for seeking reforms and charged for having the quality of life and limited taxations. For the last thing, the class movements can be considered as the consequences of the uneven development because the quality of life is something the result of it.

The Declining Power of Local Politics:

 

To begin with, there is a reducing power of local politics because both the city and suburban bring with it exact benefits from control over public decisions. Thus, there is a kind of tendency for citizens to be involved in local politics. Especially, in recent forty years, there is a decline of city politics and this issue has three main points of view.

What is first is a rough limitation of the participation in local elections. In spite of the fact that, the community life is characterized by the involvement of citizens highly in voting, the participations of citizens reduce.

Another limitation pf local politics is that the metropolitan regions are excessively fragmented. To illustrate, “Chicagohas a chaotic array of over 1,000 separate public service districts.” This causes a series of problems in coordination of service delivery. Additionally, this fragmentation of metropolitan region makes regional planning almost impossible.

The last limitation of local politics is the ideology of privatism and there are some problems with this limitation. Firstly, due to the dominancy of privatization social issues like education and welfare are neglected because, economic concerns are more important than these issues according to the ideology of privatism. The other problem is that privatization is just supporting the downtown business and the rest is again neglected. Last problem with this ideology is related to the reduction of the power of local politics because it removes not only the goals but also the operation of government from both public accountability and the political process.

In short, the quality of politics decline and communities don’t participate in urban policies. Namely, the more the crises of political process occur, the more severe condition in the quality of life in both cities and suburbs emerge.

Source: Mark Gottdiener, The New Urban Sociology, 1994, pg: 235-247, McGraw-Hill Inc.