The Republic 2 — страница 3

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non-just way. Polemarchus has difficulty in defining th measure of justice. It is first suggested as wars and alliance and alter as deals of financial agreements. Socrates refutes Polemarchus? argument by saying that one can rely on the just when money and everything else is not in use. Polemarchus? failure to identify any specific aims of justice has the further consequence that he can?t declare unjustifiable acts such a theft or perjury. His reference to benefitting friends and harming enemies suggests that he thinks of justice as a virtue confined by social aims. Justice may be thought of as an aspect which is to benefit the agent. But just acts which harm friends or benefit enemies are ultimately not beneficial to the mediator and therefore cannot be virtuous. Socrates?

dialectic is to undermine Polemarchus? belief that th goodness of justice is to be understood in terms of its social realms. This belief is undermined because if virtue is a human quality and justice is a part of virtue, then justice in that view does not limit the type of character involved in such behavior. And if justice is a virtue and its goal is something good, then we should be able to correlate a relation between the acts of goodness and justice and such is not the case with the Polemarchian view. As portrayed by Plato, Thrasymachus is presented as having a consistent and coherent attitude to justice. Thrasymachus suggests that the true nature of a just conduct can only be grasped from the perspective of power. According to Thrasymachus, to seek a moral understanding of

justice is pointless. The confrontation between Socrates and Thrasymachus and the clash that erupts as a result of their extreme views is between that of two conceptions of political power. The characteristic of just actions, as defined by Thrasymachus is defined as doing the good of another as seen from the perspective of power. Thrasymachus further defines justice in his long speech that the good reasons people have for praising justice and condemning injustice have nothing to do with their believing that it is the ends of justice that are desirable. Thrasymachus further exploits justice by his statement that ?justice is nothing but the advantage of the stronger?, but he does not define what the advantage is per se. Thrasymachus? definition does not illustrate justice as a

moral quality, it is the advantage to only those who are at the position of power; justice converted into political power by the pollis of Thrasymachus. To Thrasymachus, justice is the advantage of the stronger because it places the seemingly just man in a strong position of control. Thrasymachus? explication of justice is in view to promote the interests of those in power in every case. He introduces a criterion of justice: Justice is really the good of another, the advantage of the more powerful and the ruler, but the personal harm of those who obey and render service. Injustice is the opposite and rules over those who are truly simple and just, and those over whom it rules do what is of advantage to him who is more powerful, and by rendering him service they make him happier,

but themselves not at all. Thrasymachus claims justice as the ?good of another? as an extension of ?the advantage of the stronger?. A ruler acts in accordance with the laws of a pollis only to promote his own advantage whereas injustice is what is profitable and advantageous to oneself. But if we analyze Thrasymachus? speeches he seems to suggest that injustice is what advantages a person and makes him stronger and so it is difficult to see why he defines justice as the advantage of the stronger. But from the fact that justice may advantage someone else-the stronger, it does not follow to say that it damages the other, perhaps it advantages both. Thrasymachus? second speech states justice as ?doing the good of another?. People who consistently pursue their own advantage and are

completely unjust are the strong and happy ones as it is the injustice that makes them happy. They know how to use the just person for their own advantage, they are the ruler of the just person. Rulers are a paradigm case of those in control. The essence of ruling is, therefore, to be unjust and that is why a tyrant is a perfect ruler. He always knows what is to his advantage and how to acquire it. Thrasymachus? view of justice is appealing but therein lies a moral danger and this is refuted by Socrates. Out of the confrontation with Cephalus, Polemarchus, and Thrasymachus, Socrates emerges as a reflective individual searching for the rational foundation of morality and human excellence. The views presented by the three men are invalid and limited as they present a biased