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Argument in the Apology

The Apology of Socrates is the only work of Plato, written not in a dialogue form. Plato puts into the mouth of Socrates long argument, which consists of three separate speeches.

In artistic terms Apology is certainly commendable. Socrates is a majestic and inflexible thinker, sentenced to death because of miserable allegations. Speech of prosecutors at the trial of Socrates did not reach us. But it is clear that the allegations consisted of only common phrases.

It would be worth mentioning an unusual image of Socrates, proud and arrogant tone of his speech. Xenophon, Plato himself in other works, and the whole ancient tradition pictured Socrates as a mild and courteous man, foolishness, always ironic and sarcastic, but always good-natured and modest. In Plato’s Apology Socrates acts as a man, confident in ignorance and moral base of his judges. He is seen proud and confident who without fear uses his philosophical freedom, his courage before the court and the community and his confidence in having a particular prophetic voice of his genius, which always turned him away from unworthy acts.

The horror of the disaster portrayed by Plato didn’t to Socrates opportunities to follow the logic of his argument. For here it was an argument not just about some academic debate on abstract philosophical theme. It was a great struggle of historic forces of different eras. And this vital struggle doesn’t care about logical reasoning.

For example, Socrates’s one of the main arguments against any statement is the negation of the latter. Prosecutors of Socrates claimed that he was engaged in natural philosophy. Socrates says that he was not engaged in it. This can hardly be considered a logical argument because the mere denial is not yet evidence of its absence.

Replying to the accusation of impiety, Plato’s Socrates also talks very formally: he says that if I am an atheist, I did not introduce new deities; and if I introduced a new deity, then I’m not an atheist. Such a conclusion is not really correct. The ancient natural philosophers, who explained the universe not mythologically, but by the material elements, were undoubted atheists with traditional mythological point of view, although their material elements endowed with all sorts of attributes of omnipotence, omnipresence, eternity and even animate. Plato’s Socrates, however, is not included in the subject matter, and is limited to an indication of a logical incompatibility between faith and unbelief in general.

Socrates claims that he never was engaged in public affairs. But then he contradicts himself, repeatedly insisting that he always fought and would fight injustice.

The Apology of Socrates is the only work of Plato, written not in a dialogue form. Plato puts into the mouth of Socrates long argument, which consists of three separate speeches.

In artistic terms Apology is certainly commendable. Socrates is a majestic and inflexible thinker, sentenced to death because of miserable allegations.

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100001215
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CREATED ON
August 28, 2016
COMPLETED ON
August 29, 2016
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$12
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