Plato - Sergey Kuperman Professor Slubicki Intro to...

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Sergey Kuperman Professor Slubicki Intro to Philosophy 2/19/2008 Civic and Individual Virtue Upon reading excerpts from Book I and Book IV of Plato’s piece, The Republic , I have accumulated an abundance of information on the subject of Justice. During our class readings and discussions of Book I we were introduced to one of the main characters, Thrasymachus. Thrasymachus is someone who would be referred to as a sophist, or a person who does not believe in the purpose of absolute truth. Although he is a brilliant teacher and public speaker his views greatly differ from the beliefs of Socrates. One day while having an ordinary philosophical conversation the men stumble upon the theme of Justice. They reason to define the meaning of the word and although none of them can come up with an exact definition, Socrates plays with questions and words while the others listen. Thrasymachus, believing that nothing on earth is absolutely right or wrong, is aggravated with the Socratic seminar and challenges Socrates by stating that justice is nothing more than an advantage to the stronger people in society. Socrates disagrees with this statement and accepts his challenge to find the meaning of justice. In Book IV Socrates and the men ponder together to prove that justice is something good and desirable by individuals and society. Glaucon reminds Socrates that he must do everything he possibly can to find the answer to why justice is a good thing that he supports. Before Socrates can explain why justice is a good thing, he states what he believes justice is. He explains that justice is not a set of behaviors and actions but rather something that pertains political structure in which each person plays their own role. He claims that the city is clearly wise,
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courageous, self-disciplined and just. Thus, Plato decides to conduct their research by referring to the entirely good city of Athens. Quickly they establish the idea that there are many types of knowledge within the city. Socrates his argument by saying that the just city they live in works on the principal of specialization, that all members of Athens must play a particular role. The roles are acquired by people finding that which best suits their nature and serves to benefit the whole society. Plato then places the roles of the just city into three separate classes: the producers, the auxiliaries, and the guardians. He explains that within these classes there are various branches of knowledge but only one of the classes is considerably known to be wise. Plato compares this case to making furniture. “Is the knowledge possessed by its carpenters which entitles us to call our city wise, and
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This note was uploaded on 04/07/2008 for the course PHILOSOPHY 101 taught by Professor Skevington during the Spring '08 term at Hofstra University.

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Plato - Sergey Kuperman Professor Slubicki Intro to...

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