Introduction : two paradigms -- Philosophers by nature -- Philosophers by design I : the making of a philosopher -- Philosophers by design II : the making of a ruler -- Socratic piety : the fifth cardinal virtue -- Justice as moderation -- Conclusion : "in a healthy way.".
In this radical new interpretation of Plato's Meno, Roslyn Weiss exposes the farcical nature of the slave-boy-demonstration and challenges the widely held assumption that the Meno introduces "Platonic" metaphysical and epistemological innovations into an otherwise "Socratic" dialogue. She shows that the Meno is intended as a defense not of all inquiry but of moral inquiry alone, and that it locates the validity of Socratic method in its ability to arrive not at moral knowledge but at the far more (...) modest moral true belief. Virtue in the Cave will appeal not only to students of ancient philosophy and the classics, but also to anyone who is interested in how to live right in a world of moral uncertainty. (shrink)
In this book, Roslyn Weiss contends that, contrary to prevailing notions, Plato's Crito does not show an allegiance between Socrates and the state that condemned him. Denying that the speech of the Laws represents the views of Socrates, Weiss deftly brings to light numerous indications that Socrates provides to the attentive reader that he and the Laws are not partners but antagonists in the argument and that he is singularly unimpressed by the case against escaping prison presented by the Laws. (...) Weiss's greatest innovation is her contention that the Laws are very much like the judges who preside at Socrates' trail--interested not in justice and truth but in being shown deference and submission. If Weiss's argument is correct, then the standard conception of the history of political thought is in error--political philosophy begins not with the primacy of the state over the citizen but with the affirmation of the individual's duty to act in accordance with his own careful determination of what justice demands. (shrink)