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Plato, Republic, Book 1, section 338c (search)
state while it is in force,”Theaetetus 177 D. The formula “justice is the advantage of the superior” means, as explained in Laws 714, that the ruling class legislates in its own interest, that is, to keep itself in power. This interpretation is here drawn out of Thrasymachus by Socrates' affected misapprehensions (cf. further Pascal, Pensees iv. 4, “la commodite du souverain.” Leibniz approves Thrasymachus's definition: “justum potentiori utile . . . nam Deus ceteris potentior!”). WeIl, why don't you applaud? Nay, you'll do anything but that.” “Provided only I first understand your meaning,” said I; “for I don't yet apprehend it
Plato, Republic, Book 6, section 489b (search)
ics of Plato's style, namely the representation of thought as adventure or action. This procedure is, or was, familiar to modern readers in Matthew Arnold's account in God and the Bible of his quest for the meaning of god, which in turn is imitated in Mr. Updegraff's New World. It lends vivacity and interest to Pascal's Provinciales and many other examples of it can be found in modern literature. The classical instance of it in Plato is Socrates' narrative in the Phaedo of his search for a satisfactory explanation of natural phenomena, 96 A ff. In the Sophist the argument is represented as an effort to track and capture the sophist.