Philosophy Socrates’ Choice between a Public and Private Life Essay
Pick one of the following topics and write your term paper on it. Indicate which topic you have selected in your paper’s title.
Papers should be a minimum of 3 typewritten pages in MLA format using Times New Roman 12 point font, double-spaced. When you quote from your book, please make sure to use correct MLA citation format (Links to an external site.). Remember to create a Works Cited page and list all sources you quote in the paper. If you need help with MLA formatting and citation, please check out the MLA Guide (Links to an external site.) at Purdue’s Online Writing Lab. Socrates & Plato Topic A:
Suppose Meletus overheard the discussion in the Crito and went to Plato’s Socrates saying “In your discussion with Crito you indicated you were able to propose and defend substantive theses–you claimed to know whether escape would be just, that it is never right to return a wrong for a wrong, and you claimed to know what sort of life is worth living. In making such claims you show you do not really believe that human wisdom amounts to little. That is, you lied during the trial when you professed ignorance. It seems to me your sentence is just!”
How would you respond to this charge? Is Plato’s Socrates inconsistent or contradictory? Can Plato’s Socrates both claim to be ignorant and to know moral truths?
Suppose you encountered someone who maintained:
much of what Socrates went through at the end of his life could have been easily avoided if he had only taken his own advice and lived a private life (Apology, 32a). He would not have offended the rich and powerful, he would not have been put on trial, and he would not have had to reason with Crito about the appropriate ness of escaping.
How would you reply? Would “being private” in this sense mean giving up anything that he holds to be important? If so, clarify what would have to be forsaken, and why you think he would not be willing to do so.