Three Classes And The Soul In Plato's The Republic

1442 Words6 Pages
Joseph Daunis
Three Classes and the Soul In Book IV of Plato’s The Republic, Socrates draws a comparison between the classes evident in their fictional city to the human soul. Socrates clearly defines the three forms he finds in the city as being the appetites of mankind, or in other words, all human desires, such as pleasure, comforts, and physical satisfaction. The second form discussed by Socrates is the spirit or the component of the soul which deals with anger and perceptions of injustice. The third and final form is the mind or reason, which analyzes and rationally weighs options and solutions to problems. Socrates compares these three forms of the soul to the three classes in the city: producers, auxiliaries, and guardians. Socrates concludes that in a perfectly just society, each class would have a fixed and equal place in the city in which they only carry out their specific purpose. As stated previously, the city can be divided into three basic classes. The guardians rule the state and love knowledge above all else. The auxiliaries, or soldiers, are charged with the defense of the state and value courage and honor. The producers, or farmers, provide the city with material goods, carry out functional needs of the state, and possess a drive for comfort and security of others. All three of these classes must work in tandem with one another to achieve a more successful city. For this to occur, these classes must become balanced with one another. Furthermore, the
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