- Compare and contrast at least three of the philosophers as provided below(their points of view rather than their historical lives)
- How would you compare them to each other? In what ways are similar/different? Why do agree and disagree with one more than you do another?
- Why are the issues that they have chosen to focus on?
- Material not from books or articles.
To facilitate your paper, I will give you some highlights of these philosopher's schools of thought.
Socrates - The Grandfather of classical Greek Thought. The teacher of Plato. Since he left no literary legacy of his own, we are dependent upon contemporary writers like Aristophanes and Xenophon for our information about his life and work. In the Socratic dialogues, his extended conversations with students, statesmen, and friends invariably aim at understanding and achieving virtue through the careful application of a dialectical method that employs critical inquiry to undermine the plausibility of widely-held doctrines. Destroying the illusion that we already comprehend the world perfectly and honestly accepting the fact of our own ignorance, Socrates believed, are vital steps toward our acquisition of genuine knowledge, by discovering universal definitions of the key concepts governing human life. This is where we get the "Socratic method" so often employed in law school (see The Paper Chase).
Socrates systematically refutes the superficial notion of piety (moral rectitude) as doing whatever is pleasing to the gods. Efforts to define morality by reference to any external authority, he argued, inevitably founder in a significant logical dilemma about the origin of the good. Plato's Apology is an account of Socrates's (unsuccessful) speech in his own defense before the Athenian jury; it includes a detailed description of the motives and goals of philosophical activity as he practiced it, together with a passionate declaration of its value for life. The Crito reports that during Socrates's imprisonment he responded to friendly efforts to secure his escape by seriously debating whether or not it would be right for him to do so. He concludes to the contrary that an individual citizen—even when the victim of unjust treatment—can never be justified in refusing to obey the laws of the state.
In Meno, Socrates tries to determine whether or not virtue can be taught, and this naturally leads to a careful investigation of the nature of virtue itself. Although his direct answer is that virtue is unteachable, Socrates does propose the doctrine of recollection to explain why we nevertheless are in possession of significant knowledge about such matters. Most remarkably, Socrates argues here that knowledge and virtue are so ...