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Lecture

PHIL 345 Lecture Notes.docx

by OneClass38472 , Winter 2007
49 Pages
108 Views
Winter 2007

Department
Philosophy
Course Code
PHIL 345
Professor
Fraenkel

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January 9, 2007
Poetry
Homeric epics, for example
Gives us an idea of archaic Greece and its system of values
End of 6th century: Athens becomes a democracy
Political philosophy as an attempt to explain/set up ideal (norm) of the best political arrangement
of order
Best political arrangement for ancient Greece: what gives the most virtue or excellence leads
citizens to become good citizens (possessing arete)
What allows citizen to live a good life/be a good citizen? This is the question that we attempt to
answer through moral philosophy
Plato
Early dialogues middle late
Early dialogues reflect teachings of Socrates (his teacher) important to understand Socratic
concepts (because Socrates wrote nothing down)
What is courage? Temperance? Piety? Justice? Self-control?
These are all moral judgments that Socrates/Plato attempt to explain through their philosophy
Socratic question of what is justice?
5th century and a crisis of traditional morality causes some disagreements over how we define
moral values
How do we develop a moral system?
System that stopped being taken for granted in 5th century initial, traditional concepts of justice,
piety, etc.
Plato and Meno Anytus as one of the people who brought Socrates to trial arete (virtue)
should be taught Anytus holds conservative ideal that arete can be transmitted and does not
need to be taught
Socrates and others, however, believe that arete is inherited
Aristocracy aristos (the best) superlative of agathon (good); the best rule small group
wielding political power
Aristocracy is a form of oligarchy (oligos = few; arche = rule/power/etc.)
Difference between oligarchy and aristocracy: oligarchy does not mean that the few in power are
the best. Aristocracy is an oligarchy in which the few that rule are the best.
Greece a series of aristocracies and sometimes monarchies (the power of one)
What does it mean to be the best? How does the aristocracy hold onto power? How do they
justify their ability to rule?
Rhetoric not important until democracy
Homer: excelling in battle (p. 6) linking courage and meriting power see Homer exerpts on
the back of the course outline
Iliad VI, 123-211 to be the best to always be the first and excel over all others (Iliad, XI, 769
ff.)
Iliad, IX, 438 ff. speaker of words and a doer of deeds
Wisdom, courage and to give counsel make ones voice heard required of Greek aristocrats
Odysseus as someone who excels in wisdom and cunning; Achilles as exemplifying courage
Greeks obsessed with the concept of excelling (think: Olympic Games)
Agon competition especially
Olympic Games as connected with religious festival to Zeus show ones excellence to the gods
and derive excellence from them (Pindar)
Symposion (Plato) symposio = banquet competition for best speech for Eros (love)
Art, architecture attempts to find perfect form of human body, building proportions
Werner Jäger Paideia education in Greek attempt to form the most perfect human being
(like Greek culture in general)
Ideal coming up with sophists, Plato, Aristotle attempts by all to make education produce
perfect human beings
Idea of excellence will change (i.e. wisdom, courage, etc.), but the pursuit of excellence remains
the same
Archaic Greece and the emphasis on courage because of competition between city states and
their ruling aristocracies
Political power is tied to land ownership (natural resources)
Also: internal tensions between landowners and land workers courage is needed to defend
oneself
Sparta city-state with most of population not citizens (Helots) only purpose was to work the
Spartans land
Spartan political power was organized so that the ruling class could remain in power needed
strength, courage to keep monopolizing the Helots (p. 23)
Political problem in archaic Greece: preserve balance between the ruled and those who rule
Solon: most important Athenian law-giver (wisest) ruled at the end of the 6th century
Importance of good government: eunomia (nomos = law) land redistribution and reduced
debts for small landowners owing to powerful landowners major political reform aiming to create
more balance of power
Hubris (excessive behaviour) to knowingly commit an unjust act (justice, in this case, as
maintaining balance of power)
Can increase tensions among populations
Pleonexia = the desire to have more moral critics will criticize people who exhibit this trait
Solon the citizens themselves, lured by wealth, want to bring this great city down with their
stupidities.
Solons reforms aristocratic system but doesnt fully replace it
Where does justice come from? Who is responsible for upholding justice? ZEUS responsible
for political order based on justice political order as based on religion
Idea that there is a just law and that it is derived from the gods
Good political order in archaic Greece as being religiously sanctioned
Sira mustaqim (Arabic) straight path on which one must walk to remain in Gods favour; same
idea with Zeus influence on Greek law
COURAGE same honour system in Sparta applies in Athens; extended to women p. 4: lines
201-202
Aristocracy as gentlement kaloskagathos combines physical beauty and internal moral
excellence
January 11, 2007
Homework for next class:
Protagoras 1-4; 8; 9; 13-20
Gorgias 1; 12-15
Antiphon 2; 5-7
Critias 5

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Description
January 9 2007 Poetry Homeric epics for example Gives us an idea of archaic Greece and its system of values thEnd of 6 century Athens becomes a democracy Political philosophy as an attempt to explainset up ideal norm of the best political arrangement of order Best political arrangement for ancient Greece what gives the most virtue or excellenceleads citizens to become good citizens possessing arete What allows citizen to live a good lifebe a good citizenThis is the question that we attempt to answer through moral philosophyPlato Early dialoguesmiddlelate Early dialogues reflect teachings of Socrates his teacherimportant to understand Socratic concepts because Socrates wrote nothing down What is courage Temperance Piety Justice Selfcontrol These are all moral judgments that SocratesPlato attempt to explain through their philosophy Socratic question of what is justice th5 century and a crisis of traditional morality causes some disagreements over how we define moral values How do we develop a moral system thSystem that stopped being taken for granted in 5 centuryinitial traditional concepts of justice piety etc Plato and MenoAnytus as one of the people who brought Socrates to trialarete virtue should be taughtAnytus holds conservative ideal that arete can be transmitted and does not need to be taught Socrates and others however believe that arete is inherited Aristocracyaristos the bestsuperlative of agathon good the best rulesmall group wielding political power Aristocracy is a form of oligarchyoligosfew archerulepoweretc Difference between oligarchy and aristocracy oligarchy does not mean that the few in power are the best Aristocracy is an oligarchy in which the few that rule are the best Greecea series of aristocracies and sometimes monarchies the power of one What does it mean to be the best How does the aristocracy hold onto power How do they justify their ability to rule Rhetoric not important until democracy Homer excelling in battle p 6 linking courage and meriting powersee Homer exerpts on the back of the course outline Iliad VI 123211to be the bestto always be the first and excel over all others Iliad XI 769 ff Iliad IX 438 ffspeaker of words and a doer of deeds Wisdom courage and to give counselmake ones voice heardrequired of Greek aristocrats Odysseus as someone who excels in wisdom and cunning Achilles as exemplifying courage Greeks obsessed with the concept of excelling think Olympic Games Agoncompetition especially Olympic Games as connected with religious festival to Zeusshow ones excellence to the gods and derive excellence from them Pindar Symposion Platosymposiobanquetcompetition for best speech for Eros love Art architectureattempts to find perfect form of human body building proportions Werner JgerPaideiaeducation in Greekattempt to form the most perfect human being like Greek culture in general Ideal coming up with sophists Plato Aristotleattempts by all to make education produce perfect human beings Idea of excellence will change ie wisdom courage etc but the pursuit of excellence remains the same Archaic Greece and the emphasis on courage because of competition between city states and their ruling aristocracies Political power is tied to land ownership natural resources Also internal tensions between landowners and land workerscourage is needed to defend oneself Spartacitystate with most of population not citizens Helotsonly purpose was to work the Spartans land Spartan political power was organized so that the ruling class could remain in powerneeded strength courage to keep monopolizing the Helots p 23 Political problem in archaic Greece preserve balance between the ruled and those who rule thSolon most important Athenian lawgiver wisestruled at the end of the 6 century Importance of good government eunomia nomoslawland redistribution and reduced debts for small landowners owing to powerful landownersmajor political reform aiming to create more balance of power Hubris excessive behaviourto knowingly commit an unjust act justice in this case as maintaining balance of power Can increase tensions among populations Pleonexiathe desire to have moremoral critics will criticize people who exhibit this trait Solonthe citizens themselves lured by wealth want to bring this great city down with their stupidities Solons reforms aristocratic system but doesnt fully replace it Where does justice come from Who is responsible for upholding justiceZEUSresponsible for political order based on justicepolitical order as based on religion Idea that there is a just law and that it is derived from the gods Good political order in archaic Greece as being religiously sanctioned Sira mustaqim Arabicstraight path on which one must walk to remain in Gods favour same idea with Zeus influence on Greek law COURAGEsame honour system in Sparta applies in Athens extended to womenp 4 lines 201202 Aristocracy as gentlementkaloskagathoscombines physical beauty and internal moral excellenceJanuary 11 2007 Homework for next classProtagoras14 8 9 1320 Gorgias1 1215 Antiphon2 57 Critias5
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