Socrates And Gorgias


The most interesting and influential thinker in the fifth century was Socrates, whose dedication to careful reasoning transformed the entire enterprise since he sought genuine knowledge rather than mere victory over an opponent. Socrates employed the same logical trick, developed by the Sophists to a new purpose, the pursuit of truth. Thus, his willingness to call everything into question and his determination to accept nothing less than an adequate account of the nature of things made him the first clear exponent of critical philosophy.
One of Socrates questions in Gorgias included one that contemplates whether or not it was possible to teach the rules of speech without reference to the ...

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their original meaning.
Rhetoric is assumed to be the dealing of persuasive speech about politics and question of just and unjust actions. Right away this definition of rhetoric assumes a connection to democracy in the political sense. Politics deal with questions about just and unjust things. This is essentially what rhetoric is. In Gorgias PP 38-39 Gorgias speaks of the power of rhetoric in this way, "the power of art, then is so great and of such sort; one must, however, use rhetoric, Socrates, just as every other competitive skill. For one has learned boxing and pankration and fighting in heavy armor, so as to be stronger than both friends and enemies-one must not on this account either beat or stab and kill friend..." and he goes on about the teacher and the student, in relation to the use and responsibility of knowledge. He is basically saying that rhetoric is a competitive skill, and can be used as a weapon in competition. When it is taught to the student, it's intent is ...

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puts it, it is through understanding that knowledge is attained. But, if this is true, then how can persuasion through rhetoric lead to democracy? This process must then be a contradiction of the true meaning of democracy. He seems to be contradicting himself. Because, earlier on in his dialogue he contemplates the fact that persuasion is the individuals choice. It is up to the individual to be persuaded, so they are acting on free will. But if no conceptual ideas are being construed, or even exists, then how can knowledge be gained. Hence, the use of rhetoric through persuasion. Because to be truly persuaded understanding must be reached, and understanding is in a sense ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 11/18/2006 04:06:33 AM
Category: English
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1521
Pages: 6

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