He first talks about how justice came about. Glaucon backs up all of his points with examples of injustices and being just.
Additional Information In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Heaven and earth and gods and men, Socrates says, are bound together by community and friendship, by propriety and temperance and justice. That is why the world is called a cosmos, a word which signifies both beauty and order.
Callicles recommends the life of a brigand, a robber and a thief, because he has forgotten that geometrical proportion has great power among gods and men. He recommends excess because he has forgotten geometry.
Friendshipin the Gorgias, relates to justice and to the world order by way of proportion theory, and more specifically, since the foundational proportion is geometrical rather than arithmetical, to equality of ratio rather than equality of measure. Put otherwise, proportion theory is a structural principle of the common good.
The theme of the common good is fundamental to Socratic and Platonic moral theory. If virtue, human excellence, implies pursuit of one's own good, pursuit of one's own good implies pursuit of the good of one's fellows and of the social order of which one is a part.
The Gorgiassuggests that these aims imply a congruence between action and character, on the one hand, and proportion theory on the other. It is helpful to bring out the point by contrast. At the beginning Glaucons speech the second book of the Republic, there has just been concluded a discussion between Socrates and Thrasymachus, and Thrasymachus, if he has not been refuted in his claim that justice is the interest of the stronger there is a sense in which the whole of the Republic is a defense of that claim, if we once understand in what strength consiststhen he has at least had his mouth stopped.
He has been left speechless, left powerless to answer, by Socrates' extraordinary dialectical skill. But now Glaucon and Adeimantus, Plato's elder brothers, take up the theme Thrasymachus has left.
First, there is a kind of good which we choose to have, not for its consequences, but for its own sake: Second, there is a kind of good which we delight in both for its own sake and for the things which arise from it: Third, there are useful but burdensome things which we choose to have, not for themselves, but for the benefits they bring: Glaucon uses this division to locate the difference between Socrates and Thrasymachus over the nature of justice.
Socrates, since he maintains that justice is a source of happiness and a benefit to the soul, must classify it as valuable not only for its consequences but for itself. Thrasymachus, on the other hand, believes that justice is burdensome and practised only reluctantlyfor the sake of its consequences.
And most people, Glaucon adds, agree with Thrasymachus. This accurately sums up not only what Socrates has already said in the Republic, but also what he has to say elsewhere. In the Crito, for example, he states as fundamental to his argument the Socratic Proportion, that justice-or virtue, since justice is a term which may be used broadly enough to encompass all virtues--is to the soul as health is to the body.
By the soul, we are to understand that in us which is benefitted by justice and harmed by injustice; in Republic I the soul is treated as that in us which has as its work or function deliberating and ruling and exercising control, and also, importantlyliving. If Socrates thinks that justice is analogous to health, ifjustice is the health of the soul, then it is good as health is good, both for itself and its consequences.
Glaucon has hit the nail on the head. Now, Glaucon goes on, contrast this with what people ordinarily say about justice.
They ordinarily say that it is good to do wrong If you would like to authenticate using a different subscribed institution that supports Shibboleth authentication or have your own login and password to Project MUSE, click 'Authenticate'.
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They say that to do injustice is, by nature, good; to suffer injustice, evil; but that the evil is greater than the good. And so when men have both done and suffered injustice and have had experience of both, not being able to avoid the one and obtain the other, they think that they had better agree among themselves to have neither; hence there arise laws and mutual covenants; and.
An important part of Glaucon's speech is his explanation of the origin of morality--actually what he takes to be the prevailing conception of morality.
It is important because the theory of human nature that Glaucon uses to explain the prevalence of this conception is used later to advance his main argument. Glaucon. They say that to do injustice is, by nature, good; to suffer injustice, evil; but that the evil is greater than the good. Glaucon argues that it is always and only external constraints that keep us from acting unjustly.
To emphasize his point, Glaucon uses an example of two men and two magic rings. Both men are given the rings in which make them invisible.
consequences. Glaucon has hit the nail on the head. Now, Glaucon goes on, contrast this with what people ordinarily say about justice. They ordinarily say that it is good to do wrong but not to suffer it, and that the harm of suffering it outweighs the advantage of doing it.
Glaucon, eager to hear Socrates demonstrate that justice is worthy of pursuit as both an end and as a means to an end, offers to play devil's advocate and oppose his friend in order to resolve the debate once and for all. Socrates cheerfully accepts Glaucon's proposition.