This program brings to mind the classical Greek distinction between the notions of the "polis," the citizenry those involved with public and political affairs, and the "idiotays," the private person or "the individual" who was regarded as unfit (or perhaps lacking the desire) to participate in the public work of democracy. It is from "idiotays" that we get the English word "idiot." Properly understood, this has less to do with native intelligence as it does with a person closed in upon him- or herself. In our current political landscape, which seems to be increasingly a nation of "private persons" clinging to their individuality and individual rights, absent from any sustained thinking on public responsibility, we are, perhaps, moving away from democracy and toward an idiotocracy.
More information about text formats