Socratic Courage in Plato's Socratic Dialogues

British Journal for the History of Philosophy 20 (4):645-665 (2012)
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This article considers Socrates's conception of courage in Plato's Socratic dialogues. Although the Laches, which is the only dialogue devoted in toto to a pursuit of the definition of courage, does not explicitly provide Socrates's definition of courage, I shall point out clues therein which contribute to an understanding of Socrates's conception of courage. The Protagoras is a peculiar dialogue in which Socrates himself offers a definition of courage. Attending to the dramatic structure and personalities of the dialogue, I will point out that Socrates does not commit to the definition and that the hedonism and the definition of courage are used to disclose Protagoras's confusion regarding virtue. Following one of the clues within the Laches I will turn to the Apology and indicate Socrates's conception of courage which is based on his awareness of lack of knowledge of death and his religious conviction that nothing will happen for the good in life or in death. Finally I will show that such conception of Socratic courage satisfies the criteria in the Laches



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The Structure of Courage in the Laches, Meno and Protagoras.Jakub Jirsa - 2021 - Elenchos: Rivista di Studi Sul Pensiero Antico 42 (1):143-164.

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References found in this work

Plato: Complete Works.J. M. Cooper (ed.) - 1997 - Hackett.
The Fragility of Goodness.Martha Nussbaum - 1986 - Journal of Philosophy 85 (7):376-383.
Platonic studies.Gregory Vlastos - 1973 - [Princeton, N.J.]: Princeton University Press.
Plato's moral theory: the early and middle dialogues.Terence Irwin - 1977 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Plato: The Man and His Work.A. E. Taylor - 1926 - Mineola, N.Y.: Routledge.

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