Plato on the Value of Philosophy
Plato was the first philosopher in the western tradition to reflect systematically (and often critically) on rhetoric. In this book, Tushar Irani presents a comprehensive and innovative reading of the Gorgias and the Phaedrus, the only two Platonic dialogues to focus on what an 'art of argument' should look like, treating each of the texts individually, yet ultimately demonstrating how each can best be understood in light of the other. For Plato, the way in which we approach argument typically reveals something about our deeper desires and motivations, particularly with respect to other people, and so the key to understanding his views on the proper practice of argument lies in his understanding of human psychology. According to this reading, rhetoric done well is simply the practice of philosophy, the pursuit of which has far-reaching implications for how we should relate to others and how we ought to live.
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aims Alcibiades Alcidamas analogy argues Aristophanes art of argument art of rhetoric Athenian Athens attitude towards argument audience audience’s beauty beloved chapter character chariot allegory claim commitment compulsion conception concern conflict consider conventional practice conventional rhetoric conventional rhetorician desires dialogue discourse discussion distinction engagement in argument ensouled er¯os eudaimonia Ferrari forms friendship Gorgias and Polus Hackforth hedonism human psychology human soul interlocutors interpretation Isocrates justice kind Lysias misology moral psychology nature non-lover object one’s palinode passage person persuasive Phaedo Phaedrus philosopher’s philosophical Plato Plato believes Plato’s views pleasure pleonexia politics Polus and Callicles practice of argument practice of philosophy practice of rhetoric Protagoras protreptic pursuit of rhetoric pursuit of wisdom question reading reason refers refuted relationship rhetorical ethos scholars second speech sense Socrates soul speechmaking suggests superior Theaetetus things Thucydides Trivigno understanding virtue what’s Yunis καὶ λόγους λόγων τὴν τὸ τῶν