PHILO-120 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Polemarchus, Cephalus, Sophos
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Intro to Philosophy
● Philosophy requires the examination of one’s beliefs
○ “... it is the greatest good for a man to discuss virtue every day and those other
things about which you hear me conversing and testing myself and others, for the
unexamined life is not worth living for men” (38a4-6).
■ How valuable is the unexamined life? Is the examined life best?
● Unexamined life makes life harder. Easier to live believing what
one believes. However, overthinking can often lead to mistakes.
Example: Golfers Yips.
● Professor says: This ideal can achieved in certain contexts but not
always. Much more might need to said to prove claim.
● Structure of Republic 1 (What is Justice)
○ Various views of Justice.
○ Socrates does not give an answer to “What is Justice”. (Inconclusive)
● Characters in the Republic
■ Wealthy father of Polemarchus
■ Neither justice and wealth benefitted his family
■ Son of Cephalus
■ Challenges Socrates “Justice is interest of the stronger”
● Means something like ‘expert’ or ‘pundit’, one who is skilled or
wise (sophos) in a particular art or craft. In latter part of fifth
century, Athens became a venue for this kind of travelling ‘expert’
in the arts of discourse and persuasion.
Republic 2 (Justice vs Injustice)
● Glaucon and Adeimantus make an argument for injustice to Socrates.
○ Want to be proven wrong.
○ Argues that morality is second-best compromise.
○ Reputation of injustice could have also have a reputation of high justice
■ Examples: Riches with politics, afterlife “sorry I have sinned” *goes to
○ What’s the point of justice then?
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