Socrates Use Of Rhetoric In Plato's The Republic

598 Words3 Pages
In The Republic, by Plato, a philosopher describes his beliefs through rhetoric. In the book, Plato is able to communicate difficult philosophical topics using rhetoric and debate. These topics include: right and wrong, human nature, and knowledge. Plato’s skills of oration shine through in the form of Socrates, a famous philosopher and the protagonist of the work. One example of debate can be found in Socrates’ debate with Thrasymachus. Upon entering a home, Socrates is met with a challenge of debate from a man named Thrasymacus. During the debate, Socrates learns that his adversary has harsh views of justice and order. Thrasymachus states: “…justice is nothing else than the interest of the stronger” ( ) Meaning that those who have power often know how to use it. Socrates rebuttals by stating that one with great influence often falls prey to human impulse and desires. In another example, Socrates uses governments as examples, stating that each government “…enacts laws that are in its own interest”(78) According to Socrates, those who have control are the ones who decide what is right and what is wrong.…show more content…
Later on in his debate with Thrasymachus, Socrates explores the ideals of human nature. According to him, injustice and justice exist because of humanity’s flaws. One example Socrates gives is the plethora of occupations that humans have. If humans were perfect, then medicine and doctors would not be needed. Furthermore, shipwrights and horse-trainers would be useless because everything would already be perfect. In order to further his point, Socrates draws attention to differences between good and just. A “good” man will question his authority and “… will not want to be called mercenary for exacting a cash payment for the work of the government”

More about Socrates Use Of Rhetoric In Plato's The Republic

Open Document