Dialogue and Discovery by Kenneth Seeskin

By Kenneth Seeskin

This publication examines the Socratic approach to elenchus or refutation. Refutation via its very nature is a clash which within the palms of Plato turns into excessive drama. the continued dialog within which it happens is extra a try of personality than of mind. discussion and Discovery exhibits that, in his conversations, Socrates seeks to outline ethical qualities--moral essences--with the objective of enhancing the soul of the respondent. Ethics underlies epistemology as the discovery of philosophic fact imposes ethical calls for at the respondent. the popularity that ethical traits similar to honesty, humility, and braveness are essential to profitable inquiry is the most important to the knowledge of the Socratic paradox that advantage is wisdom. The dialogues receiving the main emphasis are the Apology, Gorgias, Protagoras, and Meno.

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Dialogue and Discovery

This ebook examines the Socratic approach to elenchus or refutation. Refutation via its very nature is a clash which within the fingers of Plato turns into excessive drama. the ongoing dialog during which it happens is extra a try of personality than of mind. discussion and Discovery indicates that, in his conversations, Socrates seeks to outline ethical qualities--moral essences--with the target of enhancing the soul of the respondent.

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We saw before that the knowledge already present in the soul requires courage to recover. To the extent that we do not recover it, we, too, are made to feel shame. In this way, the image of the dying Socrates produces in the audience a sense of unworthiness. We stand in awe of Socrates, but for that very reason, we know that our own actions will never compare to his. " Nietzsche objected that in Socrates' optimism lies the death of tragedy. 27 We can now see why this judgment is unfair. It would be more accurate to say that in his portrayal of Socrates, Plato has created a new kind of tragedy.

Finally it should be said that substantial portions of the first and third chapter have appeared in Philosophy and Literature. I wish to thank the Journal, its publisher, the Johns Hopkins University Press, and its gifted editor, Denis Dutton, for permission to use this material in the present study. All translations of Greek texts are my own unless otherwise indicated. Page 1 Chapter One Socratic Philosophy and the Dialogue Form PHILOSOPHY DOES NOT BECOME literature merely because it is written in dialogue form.

Therefore it courage is knowledge, it is teachable. But at the beginning of the dialogue, Socrates had argued, against Protagoras, that virtue is not teachable. So it seems that the two major characters have switched positions. Who, then, is the victor? Plato does not tell us. It could still be objected that if his silence overcomes the tendency to preach, it creates an equally serious problem: the tendency to confuse. To the extent that a Socratic dialogue produces confusion, it runs the risk that like so many of Socrates' respondents, the reader will grow weary and want to quit.

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