Rijo Ninan December 4, 1998

This essay Rijo Ninan December 4, 1998 has a total of 1456 words and 6 pages.


Rijo Ninan December 4, 1998
Ms. Purcell-Murphy European History
Page 1

Two of the greatest philosophers of all time are Plato and Aristotle. They both had their own views on different subjects. One area where they had contrasting views was politics.
Plato lived from 427 to 347 B.C. and was Athenian. He started a school called the Academy where he taught his philosophy to other people. He wrote two great books, The Symposium which was a book about love and The Republic which was a book on governments and was composed around 374 B.C. He was a pupil of Socrates and carried on some of his teachings. He also wrote his books in dialogue between Socrates and some other of his followers.
Plato's Republic contains almost all his philosophy on politics. "The aim of the Republic is very simple: to discover what justice is, and to show that it is more beneficial, in a certain sense of that word, than its contrary, injustice," (Nicholas White 1979, 13). He goes in depth to first discover the meaning of justice. "Ultimately Plato settles on the idea that justice is the harmony that arises when each person is able to his or her own best talent: the artisan to build, the musician to play, and the ruler to govern," (Greaves, Cannistraro, Zaller, and Murphey 1993, 124). He then goes on to employ this justice in what he calls the Ideal Society. But before he does that, he first defines what makes up a city. "The basis for a state, he says, is the association of people based on need. People aren't self-sufficient, and they have varied needs. We

Page 2
get a state when we have a group of people whose self-interest is far-sighted enough for them to specialize and divide their tasks," (Julia Annas 1981, 73). So Plato goes in to the fact that everyone must have one job. They must focus on that job and not any other. For if a person does more than one job, they will do it with less success because they are dividing their attention. By only doing one thing, they are able to work better. So, the farmer will farm, the shoemaker will make shoes, and the blacksmith will forge metal. "This is introduced what I shall call the P

Read essay without registering

Donate an essay now and get the full essay emailed you




Acceptable files: .txt, .doc, .docx, .rtf

Email Address

Related Essays