105Lecture%204 - Lecture4:FormingtheIdealCity,and...

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Lecture 4: Forming the Ideal City, and  Finding Justice Within It January 31, 2011
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For Wednesday Plato’s  Republic : Book: Pages 121-135 (434d line 2  to 445e line 3)
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Review Glaucon’s challenge is for Plato to prove that justice  is good and that we desire it in itself (not merely for  consequences that it nets us). He makes three points: 1) the social contract, 2) Gyges’  ring, and 3) the possibility of the happy unjust person and  the unhappy just person. Ultimately Plato believes that justice is good both in  itself and for itself consequences, because he  believes that it makes us happy as well. Nevertheless, he needs to make sense of our  valuing justice/morality for its own sake.
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Plato’s Argument from Book 1: Justice is  Happiness 1. Everything has a function, goal or a  telos : something that the  thing does which is its essence and which its being is aiming  towards. To think this way is called TELEOLOGICAL thinking and it is how the  Greeks looked at the world. 2. A horse, a knife, a car, a sunflower, an insect: everything has a  purpose/function. 3. The perfection of a thing’s function is its excellence or virtue. 4. The failure to realize its function is a thing’s vice. 5. The function of the soul is to live. 6. Justice is the soul’s virtue and injustice is its vice (350c10). 7. To live well is to be just. 8. To live well is to be happy. 9. No one who is unjust is happy and lives well. 10. A just person is happy and an unjust one is wretched.
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Justice in the City and the Person In order to understand the nature of justice, Plato  says that he will examine what makes a city just and  moral in order to better understand the nature of  justice and then try to spot it in the person. So Plato proposes to begin constructing the ideal city  from the ground up. In hypothesizing about the ideal city, in order to 
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This note was uploaded on 02/27/2011 for the course PHIL 105 taught by Professor Ruckgarber during the Spring '10 term at University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign.

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105Lecture%204 - Lecture4:FormingtheIdealCity,and...

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