Thinking about Political Things:
An Aristotelian Approach to Pacific Life.
Andrew Murray offers us an ingenious and humane reading of Aristotle’s Politics. He presents the Politics as its author intended it to be received, as a work that clarifies how we must think about political matters and order our civic communities if we are to bring out the best in our humanity. He does this by blending classical political philosophy with the concerns of contemporary political societies of the Pacific islands: the chapters of the book move back and forth between Aristotle and life in Melanesia, Polynesia, and Micronesia. Murray acknowledges the sharp difference between the classical city and the modern state, and shows what we who live in modern states are in danger of losing if we abandon Aristotle for Hobbes.
Robert Sokolowski, Elizabeth Breckenridge Caldwell Professor of Philosophy
The Catholic University of America
Andrew Murray offers extensive research, reflection, and deep thought on the political life of Pacific island states and applies Aristotelian political philosophy to Pacific experiences. The book is successful in its aim to explain the political philosophy of Aristotle in a way that is simple yet clear so as to enable Pacific islanders to apply Aristotle’s thought to their own issues.
Concerns of the three main races of the Pacific namely the Polynesians, Melanesians and Micronesians are well represented in excursions from the main text. While the situations in Fiji and Tonga remain difficult and will need further research, it is worth noting that the thought of democracy in Tonga was initiated by Professor Futa Helu of ‘Atenisi, who followed the Greek thinkers.
The attempt to understand the political life of the Pacific islands under the light of Aristotle’s thought is a huge task. This book is a great contribution to political thinking in the Pacific islands.
+Soane Patita P Cardinal Mafi, Bishop of Tonga & Niue
Thinking about Political Things: An Aristotelian Approach to Pacific Life. Adelaide: ATF Press, 2016. Download PDF: Murray-ThinkingaboutPoliticalThings
—— Review by John Owens, Australasian Catholic Record 93/3 (June 2016):L 381-382. Download pdf: Owens-ReviewofTaPT-ACR
—— Review by Clement Papa, Pacifica 29/2 (2016): 213-216. Download pdf: Papa-ReviewofTaPT-Pacifica
—— Review by Klower Waimi, South Pacific Journal of Philosophy and Culture. Download pdf: Waimi-ReviewofTaPT-SPJPC
—— Review by Jude Dougherty, Review of Metaphysics 69/4 (June 2016): 826-827. Download pdf: Dougherty-ReviewofTaPT-RevMetaph
—— Review by Brandon Zimmerman, Melanesian Journal of Theology 32/2 (2016): 177-192. Download pdf: Zimmerman-ReviewofTaPT-Melanesian
Articles and Papers
‘Principles of Pacific Life’, a paper delivered at the Pacific Islands Political Studies Association Conference, Democracy, Sovereignty and Self-Determination in the Pacific Islands, University of New Caledonia, Noumea, 25 – 27 June 2019. Download pdf: Murray-PrinciplesofPacificLife
‘Politics, Philosophy and the Pacific Context’, keynote lecture MATS Conference 2017, 11 July 2017. Download pdf: Murray-PoliticsPhilosophyReligionPacificContext
‘An Aristotelian Analysis of Political Possibilities’, keynote lecture MATS Conference 2017, 12 July 2017. Download pdf: Murray-AristotelianAnalysis
‘Church and State or Religion and Political Life’, keynote lecture MATS Conference 2017, 13 July 2017. Download pdf: Murray-ReligionandPoliticalLife
‘What about the Wantok System?’. Melanesian Journal of Theology 32/2 (2016): 134-147. Download pdf: Murray-WantokSystem
‘Room to Move: Thoughts from Political Philosophy’. Chapter 21 in Pacific Indigenous Dialogue on Faith, Reconciliation and Good Governance, ed. by Tamasailau M. Suaalii-Sauni, 196–199. Apia: Alafua Campus Continuing and Community Education Programme, University of the South Pacific Press, 2007. Download pdf: Murray-PacificDialogue_RoomtoMove
With Tamasailau M. Suaalii-Sauni and Etuale Lealofi. ‘Epilogue’. Chapter in Pacific Indigenous Dialogue on Faith, Reconciliation and Good Governance, ed. by Tamasailau M. Suaalii-Sauni, 256-262. Apia: Alafua Campus Continuing and Community Education Programme, University of the South Pacific Press, 2007. Download pdf: Murray-PacificDialogue_Epilogue
‘Political Reform in Tonga: Responses to the Government’s Roadmap’. With Sandra De Nardi, Roisin Lilley, Michael Pailthorpe and Andrew Curtin. CIS, 2007. Download pdf: Murray-Political Reform inTonga2007
‘Response to the Eminent Persons Group Report to the Pacific Forum’, 14 March 2007. Download pdf: Murray-ResponsetoEPGReporttoPacificForum
‘Observations on the Current Situation in Fiji-26/1/07. (www.ces.org.au), 14 February 2007. Download pdf: Murray-FijiObservations070126
”Through the Referendum, God Will Save His People’, A talk given to the Catholic Youth Maranatha Crusade, Diocese of Bougainville, 17 September 2019. Download pdf: Murray-SalvationthroughtheReferendum
‘The Church’s Role in the Time of Referendum’, A talk given to the priests and diocesan personnel of the Diocese of Bougainville on 10 September 2019. Download pdf: Murray-TheChurchinTimeofReferendum