Plato's criticism of the ``democratic man'' in the republic

Journal of Ethics 5 (1):57-71 (2001)
The article discusses two puzzles about Plato''s account of the democratic person: (1) unlike his account of the democratic city, his characterization of a democratic person is markedly incorrect. (2) His criticism of a person so characterized is criticism of a straw man. The article argues that the first puzzle is resolved if we see it as a result of Plato''s assumption that a democratic person is a person whose soul is isomorphic to a democratic constitution. Such a person has a desire satisfaction theory of good and adopts liberty and equality of desires as a basis for action. The article then argues that Plato''s criticism brings up two problems endemic to desire satisfaction theories of good, the problem of bad desires and the problem of conflicts of desires. The criticism is that the democratic person''s way of dealing with these problems, by applying the social principles of liberty and equality to his desires, is irrational.
Keywords bad desires  conflict of desires  democracy  democratic man  desires  desire satisfaction  equality  good  Plato   Republic
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1023/A:1011464824304
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 23,280
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

64 ( #74,816 of 1,932,501 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

4 ( #225,528 of 1,932,501 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.