Blindness and Reorientation: Problems in Plato's Republic
Are the just happier than the unjust? In Plato' s Republic, Thrasymachus argues that they aren't, that justice is simply the advantage of the stronger. Though Socrates apparently refutes him, Plato's brothers, Glaucon and Adeimantus, take up his argument anew, challenging Socrates to show them that justice really does better further happiness than injustice. The nature of this renewed challenge and the reason for it are hotly debated problems. Equally problematic is the question of whether Socrates succeeds in meeting the challenge in the crucial case of the philosopher-kings, whom he claims are happiest of all. Central to his attempt is a complex tripartite psychology and the yet more complex the metaphysics and epistemology of transcendent Platonic forms. But just how these are to be understood or how knowledge of such forms could help the philosopher-kings with the practical business of governing a city also remain deeply problematic issues. Beginning with a discussion of Socrates in the Apology, and his portrait by Alcibiades in the Symposium, and proceeding to topics more directly within the Republic itself, Blindness and Reorientation develops not just powerful new solutions to these problems, but a new understanding of Plato's conception of philosophy, its relationship to craft-knowledge, and the roles of dialectic and experience within it. Written in a clear and vivid style, C. D. C. Reeve's new book will be accessible to any committed reader of Plato.
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1 Human Wisdom
2 Alcibiades and the Socratic Craft of Love
3 Cephalus Odysseus and the Importance of Experience
4 Glaucons Thrasymachean Challenge
5 Souls SoulParts and Persons
6 From Beauty to Goodness
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Adeimantus agalmata Agathon Alcibiades Apollo Apology apparently appetites argument Aristotle Athenian Athens become begetting in beauty believe body Cambridge captain Cephalus claim Cleinias cognitive compulsion consequences constitution craft knowledge daimonic daimonion desire dialectic dialogue Diotima discussion divine element elenctic ethical Euthydemus Euthyphro explain forms Glaucon gods grasp Greek happiness Hence Hesiod honor honor-lover important injustice isn’t justice Kallipolis kind laws lives look Lysias masses means Meletus nature Odysseus offspring one’s Oxford paradigm person persuaded Phaedo Phaedrus Phdr Philebus philosopher-kings philosophers Plato Plato’s Republic pleasure Polemarchus political possession practice praise pregnant principles question rational order rational soul reason reputation rule rulers sake seems sense shipowner simile Socrates says someone sort soul-parts soul’s speak spindle of Necessity spirit surely Symposium tells things Thrasymachean Thrasymachus Timaeus tion true truth turn tyrant understanding unhypothetical University Press unjust virtue wise