A brief Review of Justice, Plat’s Republic It is the 5th century BC, in ancient Greece specifically the city state of Athens, it is here were a man commonly known as Plato (true name Aristocrat) begins to write brilliant philosophical dialogues, sparked by the state mandated execution of his teacher Socrates. It was in this moment Plato etched his name in to the physique of humanity, as one of the greatest philosophers in history, it was at a midpoint of his career when he wrote what is arguably his greatest work The Republic; this will be our subject of Review.
In the Republic Plato (Aristocrat) uses the character of Socrates o put forth a grand conceptualization of a Just and virtuous society a (utopia) were justice ensures good order and prosperity the Polis or city. He presents these ideas in the form of a progressive narrative which begins as a conversation about the nature of Justice. As such in this paper will concentrate on reviewing and analyzing his ideas and his conclusion on what Justice is. In order to do so we must identify what that conclusion was, Plato sums this up in one line of the republic as (IPPP) “Justice is for each man to do his duty. Now considering the tremendous scope and breath of this kook, we will Review this primary train of thought and for the sake of brevity negate some of the secondary themes In Plat’s Republic, the narrative begins when Socrates and his companion Glaucoma are returning from the festival of the goddess Behinds and, are intercepted by a group, led by a Trashcans whom coaxes them to Join them at his house; it is there where they are Joined by Polymers (a sophist) and Adamantine.
Shortly thereafter ignites a debate on the nature of Justice, the guests propose several definitions and examples of what they think Justice is, nevertheless upon dissection these are shown to be unsatisfactory. In response to a notion proposed by Trashcans that injustice is more advantageous for the individual than Justice, Socrates sets out to persuade the group that Justice is more choice worthy than injustice, in order to do this he draws a parallel between the soul and the city.
He gives to meaning that, the city is a magnification of the soul and, society is a mirror of the individuals which compose it. This is done under the assumption that the word Justice, whether applied in terms of society (plural) or the individual (singular) has the same fundamental connotation. His firs attempt at ascribing the ideal city is that of a small communitarian group of craftsmen, farmers, and traders, living only on grains wearing simple clothing, and living without a need for extravagance or war.
It is at this Juncture were Glaucoma objects describing the city as (pop) “not a city of man, but a city of pigs” His objection changes the course of the conversation Socrates concedes and that if the city is to have amenities, then it must expand, this is referred to as a feverish state, and in this state there is a need for a strong and organized military. It is in here J when he introduces the need or a lass system, meant to ensure Order, safety, and wealth.
The classes mirror these concerns in order being assured by wise rule, the Philosopher Kings (true guardians), safety ensured by a strong military (auxiliaries) and finally, wealth in the form of a strong working class of laborers, tradesmen, and merchants providing economic foundations. He does this in recognition of the ability of greed to corrupts power, A Review of justice in Plato By biochemical hold wealth cannot hold power and vice versa. Later in the text he creates an education system made to uncover the competence and potential of each individual s so they may find there place based on merit ability.
He also does this threw the regulation of sexual encounters threw the use of a rigged eugenic lottery and the disintegration of the family unit in the guardian and auxiliary cases, in favor of communal parenting. He then introduces what he calls the noble lie, in which he teaches the population that each class has an admixture of a particular metal I their blood, gold in the guardians, silver in the auxiliaries and bronze or iron in the laborers.
Plato does this in the hope that it explains the role of each group and why hey should not mix or aspire beyond their station. Plato in the character of Socrates defines Justice as doing ones duty on the premise of the city having equivalence to the soul. In order to understand or analyze this we must understand the parallels he draws between the city (polis) and the soul, as well as the correlation between his classes and the presence of the virtues.
Firstly it is imperative we understand that Plato believes in four basic virtues, first wisdom expressed in the form of the rulers (true guardians) courage in that of the soldiers (auxiliaries), that of moderation exemplified in both of these classes and finally Justice in each class complying with their onus or duty. Now according to Plato the soul, like his city has three main elements Reason, the potentate of the three, being that which is supposed to understand analyze and, decide the best course of action, this part of the soul equivalent to the rulers of the city.
Second is will, in charge of ensuring action, upholding reason and, preserving ones intentions, this is comparable in the city, to the soldiers who enforce the will of the rulers, uphold law and order as well as, reserve the safety of the state. Lastly is the souls appetite, the need for food sex shelter as well as its lust for luxuries such as spices, wines and silks; the reflections of this in the city being, the farmers who produce the food, the laborers who build your home, the craftsmen who make the tools and the merchants who threw trade obtain finery like spices and silks whom inn turn satiate desire.
Under analysis a few of Plat’s ideas Jump out as somewhat questionable or improbable firstly the in the application of his “class” or more accurately cast system he seems not to have taken n to consideration that capacity and understanding virtues does not truly make one immune to corruption in that as much as covetousness corrupts, power its self has the potential to weather even the strongest foundations, turning saints in to sinners and, the selfless in to the selfish.
We must also consider what may be good for an individual may not be good for a society in that the society springs form individuals who mold and are molded by it. I believe there is a disregard for the Egoist nature of human beings, while society may be an altruistic arrangement, the individual is selfish and considering the structure of the society it only takes one selfish individual in the correct position to topple the delicate balance of powers not only leading to degradation but possibly to utter collapse of the city (society).
As well as the flaws In the eugenic system, in that you cannot control peoples sexuality and it is bound to go ray nevertheless, he acknowledges these ‘sues. There are also ideas like such disintegration of the family unit, which would not only be hard to swallow but also hard to implement and regulate, not to mention the adverse social affect this roof identity, possibly causing problems with group identity, social stringency, and is bound to alienate certain individuals.
Simply put many of these ideas are as likely to backfire as they are to succeed. There is also a lack of contrary arguments in certain key points of the narrative, like the proposal that there be a philosopher king, on the premise that he above all understands virtue, which somehow in turn ensuring he be “good”, in truth this no way ensures he be virtuosos) or good.
His partiality towards intellectual pursuits over physical ones is unrealistic, as is his idealization of the virtues (forms) which he asserts as an empirical truth allowing these ideals to be prioritize and treated as more tangible than physical need this arguably is an injustice in terms of how the priorities of the state are arranged he neglects the socioeconomic backbone of any society in regards to education political influence, and social and economic importance.
Neglecting the importance of the people in the running the state this could be seen as a totalitarian state, as such nun may claim that this is not impartial Justice. In conclusion while the characterization of justice in the republic is a reasonable yet impartial one. Some of its premises used to come to his definition of Justice as (IPPP) “Justice is for each man to do his duty,” implies that the state mandates the (duties) of the individual; Its also questionable in that it does this not solely on merit but a segregated and impartial class system.