1. Explain how well-being in society depends upon the division of labor (see Plato selection in
Reader #1, and Haber pp. 47-48) and how the profession
mere division of labor in
making a desirable life possible for individuals in society.
Illustrate by discussing two of the
occupational groups now commonly recognized as professions.
A profession is an occupation, among other things. It is part of the division of labor and
according to Plato, the origin of the state lies in that "natural" inequality of humanity that is
embodied in the division of labor. By this, he means that all people are not meant to provide
equal services, and thus the division of labor is needed. His famous quote, “Well then, how will
our state supply these needs? It will need a farmer, a builder, and a weaver, and also, I think, a
shoemaker and one or two others to provide for our bodily needs…” describes his idea of the
division of labor.
How society is essentially
-ized, and how any Desirable Human Existence Depends
upon the organization of Society into ‘specializations' or ‘divisions of labor'.
Professions are a part of the division of labor because they do fulfill a certain need of
society. Professions go beyond the mere division of labor, mainly because of the aspect or
sense of vocation. This degree of personal devotion within a professional actually makes
life desirable for individuals in society because of the essential services he provides for the
public good. This consisted, traditionally, of health care and legal services, and the
professions had the utmost goal or fulfilling a common good, while also exhibiting a
vocation for doing so.
Devotion is the most significant feature of a professional which distinguishes him
from being just another part of the division of labor. He must have an immense amount of
knowledge, acquired through much education or training; in order to even get to the point
of having this knowledge, a huge portion of life must be devoted to even getting there.
Unlike other occupations which make up the division of labor, the professional
devotes a huge amount of his life living out the profession. For example, a salesman might
work throughout the regular work week and then go home on the weekend and go
camping for a few days, take in some local entertainment or even do absolutely nothing.
This is perfectly fine, but it is another way in which the professions differ from the regular
division of labor. They go beyond it because while the salesman is doing anything to get
his mind off of work, the professional, perhaps a doctor, might spend his “free” time
studying journals or attending seminars. His entire life is devoted to his profession and the
betterment of society.
Add info about doctors/lawyers (last part of