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PHIL lecture, sept.27.doc

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Peter King

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The Republic (lecture on Book 1)  After the death of Socrates, his followers decided to do various things o Some tried to act like Socrates o Others moved away and tried to live by his ideas o Plato chose to stay in Athens and write about Socrates‟s work  At some point, Plato was tired of writing stories on Socrates because there is no clear resolution o Began using Socrates as a mouthpiece for his ideas o Book 1 more realistic, the rest Socrates becomes more of a character o Started answering questions that were more Platonic such as “how should we live life?” o Class will still be discussing Socrates, but it will be the character of „Socrates‟ rather than the man  Topic: What is justice? o It‟s important to recognize that justice (Greek term) is something that is meant to be a quality that can be possessed by individuals and social institution  Think of it as our “fairness” o „Republic‟ is traditional title but not quite right  Literally means “society” or “on society”  Human failing to believe that the way things are, is they things ought to be o Greeks were the first to realize this  From dynastic to democracy  What is the best way for all of us to live together (see topic)  From Socrates to Plato: the project of the Republic, justice, and the opening miniature Socratic dialogue-a series of proposed definitions, each of which is found lacking in some fashion  Cephalus (conventional morality): Justice is to speak the truth and to pay one‟s debts (331c).  Against this, Socrates objects that “paying one‟s debts” is not always just-hence Cephalus‟s definition is too broad, i
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