Thrasymachus Research Paper

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There is no standard for completeness that is higher than the standards of Socrates. The first book of the Republic, Socrates attempts to define justice with his companion, and they encounter a man named Thrasymachus. Thrasymachus gives a rather atypical definition of justice, which is the idea that rulers rule for their own gain. The definition changes as both men dispute each other’s opinions. During the conversation, Thrasymachus presents the craft analogy as evidence that rulers cannot make mistakes, but Socrates expands on this analogy. He not only points out the flaws in Thrasymachus’ log but also overturns Thrasymachus’ idea of justice. Thrasymachus initially describes justice as “nothing other than the advantage of the stronger” (p.…show more content…
A craft is essentially a special knowledge to be used for a purpose, such as carpentry, horse-breeding, or pottery. He illustrates this analogy by describing a doctor working in the craft of medicine. A doctor’s job is to heal the sick, and because a doctor is a man, he cannot do his job perfectly all the time. Whether he makes mistakes or not, he is still called a doctor. Thrasymachus, however, claims that in the doctor’s moment of error, he is not practicing medicine and thus is not being a doctor. Another rather simpler example would be that a winner is always winning because if he is losing, he is not being a winner. Thrasymachus extends this precise sense to any kind of craftsman to say that no craftsman makes a mistake while he is practicing his craft. Thrasymachus then says that a ruler has a craft as well, which is to command people in a city, and because a ruler is a craftsman, he does not technically make mistakes. His mistakes would occur in a period where he cannot be called a proper ruler. Therefore, a ruler will never mistakenly pass laws that could harm himself because passing flawed laws is not part of the ruler’s craft. Then citizens act justly by following his laws, and their obedience benefit their ruler. Because rulers rule correctly and there are no mistakes in their craft, justice is always the advantage and never the disadvantage of the

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