Essay Example | Topics and Samples Online Plato's REPUBLIC.
In ethics, the Republic’s main practical lesson is that oneshould, if one can, pursue wisdom and that if one cannot, one shouldfollow the wisest guides one can find. This lesson is familiar fromPlato’s Socratic dialogues: the philosophical life is best, and if onelacks knowledge, one should prefer to learn from an expert. Butthe Republic characterizes philosophy differently. First, itgoes much further than the Socratic dialogues in respecting the powerof passions and desires. Wisdom still requires being able to surviveSocratic examination (534b–c), but it also explicitly requires carefuland extensive habituation of spirited and appetitiveattitudes (485a–486b, 519a8–b1), sublimation ofpsychological energy from spirited and appetitive desires tophilosophical desire (cf. 485d), and continued attention to andmaintenance of the desires that arise from the non-calculating partsof one’s soul (571d–572b, 589a–b, cf. 416e–417b). Second, as opposedto the Socrates of the Socratic dialogues, who avows ignorance andis content with the belief that the world is well-ordered, the Socrates ofthe Republic insists that wisdom requires understanding howthe world is, which involves apprehending the basic mathematical andteleological structure of things. Third, although the Socrates of theSocratic dialogues practices philosophy instead of living anordinarily engaged political life, he insists that his life is closerto what the political art demands than the ordinarily engaged lifeis. According to the Republic, by contrast, the philosopherprefers to be entirely apart from politics, especially in ordinarycircumstances (496c–e, 592a, cf. 520a–b).
Socrates' technique, as we see in the , is simply to ask questions.
These inconsistencies are addressed, of course, by Plato.
As this overview makes clear, the center of Plato’s Republicis a contribution to ethics: a discussion of what the virtue justice is and why a person should be just. Yet because Socrates links his discussion of personal justice to an account of justice in the city and makes claims about how good and bad cities are arranged, the Republic sustains reflections on political questions, as well. Not that ethics and politics exhaust the concerns of the Republic. The account in Books Five through Seven of how a just city and a just person are in principle possible is an account of how knowledge can rule, which includes discussion of what knowledge and its objects are. Moreover, the indictment of the poets involves a wide-ranging discussion of art. This article, however, focuses on the ethics and politics of Plato’s Republic. For more on what the Republic says about knowledge and its objects, see , and for more about the discussion of the poets, see .
Justice in Plato´s The Republic Essay examples - …
Raven, Cambridge, 1964, p.211Unless Plato had already written some short dialogues to illustrate Socrates' technique of questioning (like the ), the is the earliest thing by him that we have.