Polemarchus believes in showing justice to friends but harming enemies. Thrasymacus argues that justice does not have any benefits and makes one weak meanwhile making the other strong. The subject of justice comes about when Socrates and Polemarchus father, Cephales, start talking about old age. As they converse, Socrates asks about Cephales success. This is when Cephales brings up his definition of justice which is being honest and following legal obligations.
Plato's purpose when writing "Apology" was to acquit posthumously Socrates from false accusation. In the Apology Socrates defends himself against the charges brought against him by his prosecutor Meletus in two ways. In the first way Socrates describes his method and
Socrates spent the entirety of his life practicing philosophy. He questions everyone who claims to have wisdom and eventually comes to either aggravate those he made to look foolish or inspired those who kept an open mind. At one point Socrates claims that his life has been no less heroic than the heroes who fought at Troy. Considering how vital heroism is to Athenian culture, this claim can be unfavorable. Most Athenians when prompted about what is a hero, will picture Achilles, or one of Homer’s other heroes, not a man who “Corrupts the youth”, or “Is an Atheist”.
It is interesting how the plot twists; Alcibiades opts out praising Eros, and instead, he expresses his reverence towards Socrates. For this politician and playboy, Socrates seems as the perfect personification of Eros, and therefore, deserves the most cordial and sincere admiration. Alcibiades begins his speech with praising Socrates’ skills of a true philosopher and a distinguished speaker. However, Socrates’ reproach for others’ unjustified praise cannot be applied to Alcibiades’ one. “…I’m going to tell you the whole truth…” (217b), says Alcibiades.
Socrates is portrayed as a religious man who for the better part of his life has been obeying the divine command. The question that is asked however is whether one is under an obligation to obey the laws even when they are not just. According to his Crito and his friends, Socrates would have been justified to break the laws and run out of prison because justice had been denied to him, to begin with. However, Socrates is accustomed to doing what he believes is right. He cannot forsake this course to save his life.
The claim attributed to him by Plato that "an unexamined life is not worth living"… he inspired his followers to think for themselves instead of following the dictates of society and the accepted superstitions concerning the gods" (Mark 1). Do to Socrates' carefree lifestyle of no conformity, he was often accused of breaking laws and customs. Similarly, The Apology and Crito, speaks of Socrates experience with these accusations and how he believes persuasion is the most effective means of protest. The Apology is a dialogue written by Plato in 399 BC. The Apology features a speech presented by Socrates during his trial with the government.
What if every known thing in the world turned out to be misguided? What if people within the world learned ways of life and adapted to environments only to find out that it was all a lie? In "The Allegory of the Cave" from Plato's "The Republic", the same questions were considered and analyzed by Socrates, the speaker of the story. The Philosopher Socrates explicates his allegory of great curiosity to Glaucon, a man of whom Socrates shares his wealth of wisdom with. Socrates' purpose in expressing the allegory is to show how the human race may not always see the truth but rather convince themselves that what they see is the truth.
There was a moment in the Apology, where Socrates discussed how he was told by the God of Delphi that he was the wisest man. Socrates did not believe this to be true, so he went on a search for someone wiser. It was through this search that Socrates discovered the ignorance that came with “wise” men. He started by seeking out the wisest men he had heard of who were politicians. This led him to discover that men who are considered wise by others ,and by themselves, often
Thus, I would argue that Plato was simply defending Socrates from the ‘sophistic shadow’, by praising him as a philosopher. To first understand my interpretation of Plato’s defense, one must understand the development of the word ‘sophist’ and how it became a derogatory term. Before Plato the word ‘sophist’ was a well-respected title. However, as this definition changes, from here onwards ‘sophist’ will refer to a pre-Socratic sophist, a wise man. While a ‘neo-sophist’ shall hereafter refer to the men who use rhetoric and false arguments to sway others, something prominent during Plato’s time.
After speaking with Cephalus about justice, Socrates moves on to speak with his son, Polemarchus. Initially, Polemarchus’ definition is similar to that of his father’s. Polemarchus believes that justice means that you should help friends, and harm enemies. Knowing Socrates, he clearly was not going to willingly accept this definition; there are always exceptions. According to Socrates, depending on the occupation of an individual, there are multitude of ways to “help friends” and “harm enemies”.