Plato and Democracy

Plato and Democracy - PlatoandDemocracy

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

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Plato and Democracy Plato is one of the earliest and most profound critics of democracy.  In the  Republic  he develops a  theory of the ideal state, and in doing so discusses some of the problems that have always  bedeviled democracies. Plato’s discussion is aimed at a particular kind of democracy: what is called  direct  or  participatory  democracy.  In this form of democracy, there is no mediation between the views of the many and  the decision of the state.  In other words, the major decisions of the state are made directly by  the citizens by voting. The Ship of State According to Plato, the best state is the one whose leaders are those most likely to make  decisions that will best benefit the state and its citizens.  This requires both knowing what is best  for the state and having the self-control to resist the desires for gain or glory that can distract us  from those right actions.   Plato thought this meant that the rulers of the ideal state would have to be philosophers, as it is  in studying philosophy that we learn both what is right and how to gain control over our  passions and to instead be ruled by reason.  However, if philosophers would make the best  rulers, why is that they so very rarely 
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 02/22/2011 for the course PHILO 106 taught by Professor Silverman during the Spring '09 term at CUNY Hunter.

Page1 / 3

Plato and Democracy - PlatoandDemocracy

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