Plato’s Crito takes place in the jail cell of Socrates, who is wrongfully committed for a crime and is subjected to death. Socrates friends, including Crito, formulate a plan to bribe the guard overlooking Socrates and help him escape in order to give him a peaceful life in exile. Yet, Socrates objects to all of these actions and chooses to face death for many valid reasons. Socrates does not take a stance about whether escaping looks good or bad, instead he lets other people decide whether it is good or bad, for it reflects on them and not on Socrates. Socrates views escaping his unjust punishment as wrongful due to his gratitude, consistency, and loyalty to the laws and order of the government. The reasoning behind Socrates’ friends trying to persuade him to escape are validated through their arguments. First, the friends are worried about the opinions of others for it could look like the friends did nothing to try and help Socrates in this situation. For instance, Crito states that it’s not only a disaster that he will lose an exceptional friend like Socrates, but that Crito will “appear to most people, who don’t know you and me well, not to care- since I could’ve saved you” (pg 105). Although Crito and the rest …show more content…
Socrates was placed in prison by the unjust laws of his accusers. Yet, after Socrates’ sentencing, he obeys the laws of staying imprisoned and is determined to not escape. Also, he does not commit bribery to the guard. In a way, the laws are both good and bad in Plato’s Crito. The laws, or in fact the accusers, unjustly put Socrates in prison and did not give him a fair trial, instead chose to execute. The laws are suppose to protect the society and its people, yet when the order of the government turns corrupt, then the validity of everything is at stake. As one can see, the corrupt laws placed Socrates in prison and he chose to abide by the impartial laws in order to be consistent and loyal to the
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
He says that Athens brought Socrates to birth and “nurtured and educated” him meaning that he could not deny that he is Athens’ “offspring and servant” (50e). Subsequently, he asserts that in the same way as sons cannot be considered equal to their fathers, individuals cannot be deemed equal to their government, and thus must comply with its regulations. He goes so far as to claim that their country should be honored before anything or anyone else and individuals have no “right to retaliate against [their] government” regardless of how unjust their actions might be (51a). Once entered into this agreement with a government, Socrates gives three options for individuals in the face of laws that they feel are unjust. Persuade it, obey, or endure in silence whatever you are expected to endure as “To do so is right” (51b).
He doesn’t allow Crito to help him escape from jail because it would be unjust. Because of Socrates's strong belief in the law, I believe Socrates would not support King’s decision to march in Birmingham. The main reason why Socrates would not support
Socrates states that if one does not agree with the contract that you tacitly agreed to that one must either try and persuade the state to change or follow the rules that they have. Socrates tried to sway the court on his ruling and failed, he now feels obligated to follow through with the ruling and accept the punishment that he was given. He also realizes that if he did not like the rules and regulations of Athens that he had the choice to leave and reside in another city. Socrates knows that since he has lived in Athens for many years and benefited from the goods and services of Athens he feels obligated to give Athens his
In this paper I will argue that Socrates’s argument at 50a-b of the Crito would be not harming his fellow citizens by breaking the laws. Based on the readings from Plato’s The Five Dialogues, I will go over the reasoning of Socrates’ view on the good life. I will then discuss the three arguments Crito has for Socrates regarding his evasion of the death sentence including the selfish, the practicality, and the moral arguments. I will deliberate an objection to the argument and reply to the objections made in the paper and conclude with final thoughts. Socrates argues in the Crito that he should not escape or disobey the law because it is unethical.
Political activists and philosophers alike have a challenging task of determining the conditions under which citizens are morally entitled to go against the law. Socrates and Martin Luther King, Jr. had different opinions on the obligation of the citizens in a society to obey the law. Although they were willing to accept the legal punishment, King believed that there are clear and definable circumstances where it would be appropriate, and sometimes mandatory, to purposely disobey unjust laws. Socrates did not. Socrates obeyed what he considered to be an unjust verdict because he believed that it was his obligation, as a citizen of Athens, to persuade or obey its Laws, no matter how dire the consequences.
Through becoming a teacher of the young men who followed him in Athens, Socrates effectively began to enter the public life. He was able to influence others through sharing his conclusions of justice, self-examination, and piety, and by asking relentless questions. Socrates effectively showed that an individual can live a private and a public life, even if Socrates was not directly involved in the policy-making in Athens. An individual can combine these two aspects of life in a productive way allowing her/him to live a full existence. These individuals can become teachers, politicians, and activists who use their focus on justice and piety in their private lives to advocate and create laws that promote true justice for the rest of the
Socrates was a greek philosopher who found himself in trouble with his fellow citizens and court for standing his grounds on his new found beliefs from his studies about philosophical virtue, justice, and truth. In “Apology” written by Plato, Socrates defended himself in trial, not with the goal of escaping the death sentence, but with the goal of doing the right thing and standing for his beliefs. With this mindset, Socrates had no intention of kissing up to the Athenians to save his life. Many will argue that Socrates’ speech was not very effective because he did not fight for his life, he just accepted the death sentence that he was punished with. In his speech he said, “But now it’s time to leave, time for me to die and for you to live.”
By questioning holiness, gods, piety, impiety and justice, Socrates questioned the authority, the choices it made, and the principals it followed. Unlike in The Euthyphro, in The Crito, Socrates defended the law and authorities. The debate took place in jail where Socrates was waiting for his execution. Crito, his friend, came to visit and tried to persuade Socrates to escape.
The first concept that I noticed shared by Russell and Socrates was the concept that one had to remove themselves before serious philosophical contemplation could take place. In Russell 's case, he refers to the "Self" and the "Not-Self". With Socrates, as seen in the Apology, confronting his accuser about the corruption of youth, his accuser is silent because he had not given the matter any thought. Socrates awareness of his own ignorance frees him from what Russell would refer to as "Self". I mention this because it serves as a common theme even as both philosophers differ in their messages.
Socrates bases this view of justice on the worth of living a good life. “And is life worth living for us with that part of us corrupted by unjust actions” (47e) If we corrupt our soul with injustice, our life would not be worth living, therefore one must never commit an injustice. “When one has come to an agreement that is just with someone, one should fulfill it.”(49e) It is this agreement with the Laws that Socrates would be violating, if he were to
Socrates should remain in prison after evaluating Critos arguments although Socrates’s were stronger. I’ll begin with Crito’s argument and what makes them strong, and what doesn’t. Next, I’ll focus on Socrates arguments and what makes them good and what makes them weak, mainly his focus that living with a bad soul isn’t worth living when you have a bad soul. Crito gives Socrates three arguments.
By escaping from prison, he would be breaking the laws of the city. Since the laws all together are seen as one, by breaking one law he would be breaking all the laws. In order for a law to be legitimate, the citizens of the city must follow the laws. If the law is broken, it is no longer a legitimate law. This is why Socrates
He says, “I do not corrupt, or if I do corrupt, I do it involuntarily, so in both cases what you say is false” (26a, p. 75). He continues by saying that if he corrupts involuntarily, “the law is to bring in those in need of punishment, not learning” (26a, p. 75). This further points out Socrates’s innocence. He believes that he would need to learn of his wrongdoings rather than be punished because he doesn’t see anything wrong with his actions.
On his way to his death some might say he should escape since his trial is unjust. Some might argue, like Socrates, that it isn't right for him to escape and go against his word. His friend Crito is trying to argue the reasons why Socrates is in the right for escaping, while Socrates is arguing the opposite, why his morals will not allow him to do so. Socrates argues many things and makes very firm arguments.
In conclusion, it is shown that the ethics of Socrates and Plato can be understood by examining the works of the Crito, Meno and Phaedo. Plato 's philosophical concept in these three dialogues is mostly about denying what the self wants, either normal things like food and earthly desires or trying to gain knowledge, and instead, choosing what is just and right. This is Plato’s concept of a good life. From this quest for knowledge, virtue is obtained, and this is the main goal of philosophy in Socrates ' mind. Laws must be made in accordance with wisdom by those who practice philosophy, and must seek to benefit the city as a whole.