modern times, what Aristotle called a “polis” has developed into the state –
an independent political unit. Most
often states are called “nation” or “country” or “nation-state.”
your time studying government in this course, this use of the term “state”
should not be confused with the term as it applies to those sub-governments
within the United “States” of America.
In the early days of this nation, each of the original 13 states was
actually its own mini-nation, with all of the powers of independent
states. However, with the ratification
(legal acceptance) of the Constitution in 1787, the term “state” came to mean
a smaller part of the U.S.A. – but such states are now under the over-all
sovereignty of the national, or U.S. government, and are no longer entirely
independent of the rest of the nation.