What would Socrates think

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
8,873
#4
It's extremely hard to say what socrates woudl say on Anything. All we have is eitehr other people (mainly Plato) using Socrates as a sock puppet to spout their thoughts an Ideas (NOT socrates thoughts an did Ideas) and some ancient Athenian pop culture references to scorates. It's hardly enough to have anything but a really sketchy Idea of Socrates may have thought at all., extending that to what he would have thought aboiut various writers long after his time is an exercise in hypothetical thought would extreme lack of real information. It's value is pretty questionable.
 
Aug 2010
16,055
Welsh Marches
#5
That is a gross oversimplification, by comparing Plato's early dialogues (where the dialectic is more purely Socratic) with passages from Xenophon and the reamisn of Aeschines in particualr, it is possible to reconstruct to a reasonable extent the Socratic approach, and distinguish his views from those of Plato. The importnat thing about Socrates is that he hardly ever expressed anything directly, but proceeded by questioning other people and making them question their own conceptions; his 'doctrines' are either paradoxes or truisms. One can assumea broadly Socratic approach in questioning the ideas of any philosopher; but it problematic to ask what Socrates would have thought of thinkers who belonged to a wholly different culture and were not primarily interested in questions of personal morality and human virtue. Dostoevsky was of course greatly interested in such matters, but approached them though fiction from a Chritian perspective. Some of Rousseau's ideas might have interested him, but I think he would have despised those of Machiavelli (Socrates plainly dispproved of any kind of Realpolitik) and of Ayn Rand who thought that personal success was more importnat than goodness.
 

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
8,873
#6
That is a gross oversimplification, by comparing Plato's early dialogues (where the dialectic is more purely Socratic) with passages from Xenophon and the reamisn of Aeschines in particualr, it is possible to reconstruct to a reasonable extent the Socratic approach, and distinguish his views from those of Plato. The importnat thing about Socrates is that he hardly ever expressed anything directly, but proceeded by questioning other people and making them question their own conceptions; his 'doctrines' are either paradoxes or truisms. One can assumea broadly Socratic approach in questioning the ideas of any philosopher; but it problematic to ask what Socrates would have thought of thinkers who belonged to a wholly different culture and were not primarily interested in questions of personal morality and human virtue. Dostoevsky was of course greatly interested in such matters, but approached them though fiction from a Chritian perspective. Some of Rousseau's ideas might have interested him, but I think he would have despised those of Machiavelli (Socrates plainly dispproved of any kind of Realpolitik) and of Ayn Rand who thought that personal success was more importnat than goodness.
No it is not.

there is no basis what so ever to say plato's verison contains any of socrates thought,
 
Aug 2010
16,055
Welsh Marches
#7
It's not a good idea to make categorical statements of that kind when you plainly don't have sufficient knowledge to be able to back them up.
 
Aug 2018
124
digital world
#8
Socrates
Machiavelli
Rousseau
Schopenhauer
Dostoevsky
Ayn Rand

:upsidedown:...What would Socrates think about Ayn Rand?

Once again...
Socrates
Machiavelli
Rousseau
Schopenhauer
Dostoevsky
Ayn Rand
Socrates,

New cycle..
;)
 

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
8,873
#9
It's not a good idea to make categorical statements of that kind when you plainly don't have sufficient knowledge to be able to back them up.
Pot kettle Black., Thats entirely my piont. My categorialcal statement is thtere not enoughinformation to make categorical statements, in this case,


OIn what is your assumption that when Plato sock puppets Socrates there is anything of Socrates actual philosophical thoughts contained at all?

Is thee any common ground really between Plato's Socrates and xenoiphons? How dio you know any similarities are not similarities between Xenophon and Plato?
 
Aug 2010
16,055
Welsh Marches
#10
This is a favourite topic for undergraduate ancient philosophy courses. You have to start by distinguishing the different periods of Plato's writings, into roughly three, starting with the early more purely Socratic dialogues, and passing on the middle and late works in which he not only puts forward his own philosophy (the theory of ideas and much else) but also his own particular methods of dialectic and philosophic analysis. Two particualr features of the early dialogues is that thye are largely devoted to the examination of different virtues, and that they are 'aporetic', i.e. that they don't reach any positive conclusion, but end with the interlocutor being reduced to a state of perplexity as he recognizes the incoherence of his own ideas aout moral issues and the good life. There is good reason to think that this procedure is closely realted to that which was adopted by the historical Socrates, when he waylaid people and cross-examined them about their moral views. Such an interpreation can be developed not by comparing Palto's and Xenophon's works as a whole, by by seeking out and comparing those parts of their work (relatively few in the case of Xenophon who was not much of a philosopher) here thsi distinctive form of argument can be found, along with what else is recorded of the life and views of Socrates, and also considering other relevant material, e.g the fragments and testimonies of Aeschines, Antisthenes and other followers of Socrates. Although there is no general agreement about the exact nature of Socrates' thought, enough can be stablished through this approach to show that iit cannot be categorically denied that Plato (along with others) gives some indication of the nature of that thought. If he hadn't given some specific inspiration to this dipsparate group of people, he could hardly have exerted such an influence on the development of Greek philosophy. The varied nature of the ideas of his followers (Antisthenes was an ancestor of the Cynic and Stoic movements while Aristippos was a hedonist) provides another clue: what was it exactly in Socrates that could provide the start for the development of such varied moral ideas?
 

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