Accounts of Eros in the Symposium

Accounts of Eros in the Symposium - The Accounts of Eros in...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
The Accounts of Eros in the "Symposium" The word love carries with it many, many different interpretations. In modern day, our views on what is appropriate love is much different from the views from the time of Socrates and Plato. To them love was eros, a direct translation of the word love. However, the word itself wasn't the only thing that was different about love. In Plato's "Symposium", there is a celebration for Agathon. He had just won a dramatic contest in Athens, Greece two nights ago. It is customary to drink much wine at these gatherings, however, every one present is too weak from the night before. (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg. xiii) So a proposition is made, by Phaedrus, to properly give praise to the god Eros, and speak on the topic of love. It was their opinion that no poet has yet been able to properly do so. (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg. 7) There were a total of seven accounts given in praise of eros, by seven different people who are present at the party. Of these accounts, the one that made the most sense was the speech of Socrates when he quotes Diotima. This account is practical, and shows love not as a heavenly creature, but as a mortal being, where we can interact with him. It also has answers that most of the other accounts could not even question. This is what stands the speech of Socrates and Diotima apart from most of the others. But, there were two other speeches that were also impressive and brought about points that Socrates did not make. These accounts were given by Aristophanes and Agathon. Through these three speeches, we can get a good picture of what eros is. Starting with the most complete account: Socrates and Diotima; and moving through Aristophanes and then Agathon, this paper will show why these accounts are superior, and why Socrates' makes the most sense. After Agathon's speech, it was Socrates' turn to present his account of eros. But before he does, he tells Agathon that his speech was marvelous and that at one time, Socrates also believed in what Agathon believed. That was until a women named Diotima taught him the real truth in eros. It is however, believed, that Socrates made up the character of Diotima, the reason, though, is unknown. In spite of this, Socrates gives a remarkable speech that is truly complete. One of the first misconceptions among all the speakers was the age of the god Love. Many believed him to the oldest of the gods, thus making him ancient. Diotima knows this is not true. She speaks of the way Love was conceived, a clever scheme by a god to escape her misfortunes. It seems the goddess of poverty, Penia laid down beside
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 12/19/2010 for the course PHIL 11 taught by Professor Jackman during the Spring '10 term at York University.

Page1 / 3

Accounts of Eros in the Symposium - The Accounts of Eros in...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online