Socrates Analysis

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Teaching with Principle (How Socrates is Intriguing in Republic 1 & 2) Socrates has been known to be a teacher who will have his students question their own ideas and beliefs just through a few simple questions. In Plato’s work, Republic, Socrates shows this skill very blatantly. Especially in books one and two, Socrates has the men around him questioning and discussing very thoughtful topics. As stated in Learning Considered Within a Cultural Context, “Socrates valued private and public questioning of widely accepted knowledge and expected students to evaluate others’ beliefs and to generate and express their own hypotheses.” (Tweed, Lehman) By doing this, Socrates opened a whole new horizon for his students and gave them the opportunity…show more content…
With every man’s definition of the word justice, Socrates has an answer or example that will prove it wrong. It is fascinating that Socrates is able to take any view of a situation and find an illustration that will turn it in a new direction. The fact that he has so much knowledge and is willing to pass it on to anyone who will listen is something that you do not often see in teachers. The Republic of Plato explains Socrates’ passion for helping others to gain a greater understanding of the simple things in life, whether it be a definition of justice or something even more complex. (Bloom) Polemarchus’ explanation of the word justice is that you give each person what is due to them. So, basically, if you have a good friend, you will do good to them, and to your enemies you will act in a way that is not friendly. Socrates again refutes this point by explaining to Polemarchus that you do not truly know if a person is your friend or your enemy, or whether a person is “good or evil.” You could very well be treating a person well just because they act friendly toward you. You don’t know, however, what they act like around others in their community or family settings. Socrates asks Polemarchus, “But can the just make men unjust by justice? Or in general ,can the good make men bad by means of virtue- is that possible?” (pg.…show more content…
Although he is perfectly willing to go against everyone else’s definition of the word, he does not give his interpretation of it. Socrates refutes Thrasymachus’ theory of justice, that whoever has the most power will make the most decisions, by pointing out that “obedience to the laws by the subjects is occasionally not in the interest of the rulers,” as stated by Thrasymachus’ Definition of Justice in Plato’s Republic. (Hourani) But Socrates does not give his own definition. He doesn’t even need to make his own point in order to refute the other men’s, and this is what is so intriguing. How does he make his point time and time again to each of the men without even having a solid definition of his own to stand on? He has perfected the method of teaching in a way that will get the minds of others going without having to insert any extra information into the

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