Date of Award

Spring 2020

Presentation Date


Document Type

Senior Essay

First Advisor

David Bird


What is a government? Further, what is a good government? Plato addresses these questions in his Republic using abstract concepts of Good, True, and Justice in order to develop a government with a united goal of achieving a perfect Good city. Historically, though, Republics inspired by Plato have quickly degenerated out of functionality because of an inability to change. In the Federalist Papers, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison attempt to defend a new Republic, a Republic which addresses Plato's insufficiencies with scientific, non abstract truths which change with societal changes. This Thesis explores the movement from abstract aspirations to experiential functionality in government.