What is Plato ' s critique pf the democracy in whi
This essay What is Plato ' s critique pf the democracy in whi has a total of 726 words and 3 pages.
What is Plato ' s critique pf the democracy in which he lived? Miranda Fan Plato spends much of " The Republic " disparaging Athenian democracy while promoting rule by philosopher kings. Plato criticize s the athenian democracy , which is the democracy he lived in by pointing outs that the ignorance of masses is contradictory with the real needs of specialized rulers. He defined social justice as proper hierarchy according to each individuals nature gift, and only the highest level which is philosopher king should rule, otherwise will have chaos just like what happened in the ship allegory. Further more, he created an ideal world with philosopher king to implicit criticize athenian democracy . Plato started his argument from the original of his ideal city. Communities are found because individual human being find that they aren ' t self-sufficient (Plato, Republic, 59). He argued that people need to be specialized on one job due to how time-consuming it could be (P60). During the development and expansion of each societies, war is inevitable. He made an analogy between shoemakers and soldiers to illustrate soldiers need even more to be specialist (P65), which ,since he later made clear that rulers should come from soldiers, laid the foundation of philosopher king . To further demonstrate the incapacity of the public, which he called masses, he formulated the noble lie about god included different earth metal s, and because certain group of people are iron and copper(119), that ' s why " It ' s impossible, then, for the masses to love knowledge " (215). He also used the cave allegory (240 - 248) to suggest what it is like to be a philosopher trying to educate the public. Most people are not just comfortable in their ignorance but hostile to anyone who points to out. In fact, the real life Socrates was sentenced to death by the Athenian government for disrupting the social order. With the cave parable, Plato is arguing that the masses are too stubborn and ignorant to govern themselves. Plato argued the obsessive of pursuing freedom will cause a series of problems, such as social chaos and moral decay. He used the analogy of ship to prove that only the " genuine sea-captain who studied the yearly cycle, the seasons, the heavens, the stars and winds, and everything relevant to the job " (208) , which resembled to people who has knowledge called the philosopher kings should rule, otherwise the same chaos on the ship will happened in the society. Another serious drawback of democracy government is " teachers are afraid of their pupils and curry favor with them ,while pupils devise their teachers and their attendants as well " . I believe this is also a reference to the death of his teacher, Socrate. When we let the ignorant masses hold the power of making political decisions, the rightness will be overwhelmed by the will of populace, which highly likely lead to unjust society and moral decay. To solve all the questions he discussed before, which he argued implicit ly exist in the democracy society of his age, he proposed philosopher kings. The essence of philosopher kings is to solve the problem of democracy marginalizes the wise. He argued that the society should education all men ,and later separate them to three hieratic group depending on weather or not this person has " a good memory, quickness learning, broadness of vision, elegance, and love of truth, morality, courage and self-discipline " (207) He concluded the necessity by saying that unless communities have philosopher as kings or current kings become philosopher (193). In order to ensure his philosopher kings won ' t become brutal and greedy dictatorship to harm the common good of whole society, he is very strict with the rulers. He argued that they should not have their own family or private property, because these are the origin of corruption.( P ?) All in all, Plato use his profound stories and allegories to implicated criticize Athenian democracy by pointing out the unchangeable situation of masses being ignorance and then showed problems within the society caused by democracy. He also described an ideal new world which everyone can do
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