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EN
The main task in this paper is to tackle a problem in the Protagoras whose solution is long overdue - the one posed by the fact that in stating and defending his doctrine of ''the unity of the virtues'' Socrates employs formulae which seem hopelessly at odds both with common sense and with the procedural assumptions of his own dialectic. The proportions of this problem are obscured in standard discussions of this passage.
EN
In this paper the dialogue Protagoras is analyzed in light of Aristotle's conception of dialectic as described in the Topics. The aim is to follow those argumentative strategies and other features of discussion between Socrates and Protagoras which represent rules or characteristic steps of dialectical discussions in Plato's and Aristotle's times. This approach to Plato's dialogues (including Protagoras) could extend our understanding of these writings. In the Protagoras the paper detected these dialectical motives described in the Topics: dialectical problems and questions, strategies recommended for questioner as well as for answerer, allusion to all three goals of dialectical discussions, allusion to ''rules and rights'' for both participants of discussion, the opposition of the views of the many and the wise.
EN
The essay investigates the interpretative possibilities inherent in the Homeric undertone of the descriptive introduction to the great debate in the Protagoras, its exploitation of the katabastic motives known from the earlier literary tradition and possible allusions to the contemporary dramatic art. Should we take those allusions as indication of the authorial intent, it seems arguable that the references to the underworld voyages of Odysseus (explicit) and Dionysus (possible) may reveal Plato's highly negative opinion concerning the sophistic training and prepare the ground for the imminent clash between the Socratic elenchus and Protagorean sophistry, thus being of particular value in any attempt to reconstruct Platonic psychagogic techniques.
EN
The paper’s aim is to claim that Socrates’ philosophy according to Plato’s dialogue should be taken as a dialectic therapy. Socrates’ dialectic therapy as a care of the self is not an isolated inspection of the individual conscience. As long as the Socratic therapy is dialectical, the possibility of the interlocutor’s self-transparency is possible through dialogical cooperation. This self-transparency is not the possessing of the good, but the very dialogue and mutual examination of the self. The therapeutic dialogue demands that the interlocutor be able to recognise himself in the dialectic of defining what he wants. Therefore, the dialogue enables the person to know his own good through the dialogue’s activity.
EN
AAccording to Plato, the poetry and the painting belong to 'mimetic arts'. A painter does not represent the Idea, the essence of objects. A bed that was painted is only imitation of imitation and that is why this bed pictured by a painter 'is as many as three steps away from nature'. Today, it is believed that an artist - like God - creates a new world deriving it from his own imagination. In contrary, in Plato's conception only God is a real creator. On the other hand, Plotinus claims that the arts cannot be disregarded or condemned only because they imitate nature, which itself is imperfect. He completely inverts Plato's schema. In his opinion, art is superior to nature. Plotinus, criticizing Plato's criticism of mimetic arts, admits that the artist is able to reach to divine and intelligible causes and to make visible the very patterns of things. The figurative art of Fayum Portraits no less than the Byzantine art would be mirrored in the metaphysics of Plotinus whereas the abstract art would reflect his metanoetics that sets forth the theory of One without any form and would give value to unconscious acts of artistic creation.
6
Content available remote Stulecie Sporu o Platona
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EN
The aim of this paper is to present the main theses and the importance of Tatarkiewicz’s article The dispute about Plato (Spór o Platona) in polish reception of Plato’s philosophy. This article – which was published by Tatarkiewicz a hundred yeas ago (1911) – was the first presentation of the new and interesting interpretation of Plato’s theory of ideas which was inspired by Marburg neo-Kantian school. In Tatarkiewicz’s view the Plato’s philosophy is not some kind of metaphysics but it is generally the theory of knowledge. We can agree this is still unusual approach to Plato and we have a good reason to remind this early Tatarkiewicz’s essay.
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nr 3-4
229-249
EN
The principal aim of this paper is to investigate the first uses of the metaphor of sleep and dream. This leads first to the general conclusion that the origins of the metaphor are to be looked for in philosophical texts, namely of Heraclitus and Plato. In the writings of the former it is related to the specific concept of the nature of man, characterized by unification and centralization - new in the period - of the cognitive functions. Heraclitus is apparently the first who uses the image of sleep to depict a state of cognitive or perceptive imperfection (basically an incapacity to see the reality), whereas Plato later establishes the similar use of the image of dream. In the course of the analysis more particular problem emerges, namely ambiguity related to the metaphor. In Heraclitus it is primarily the ambiguity due to his way of expression which invokes certain uncertainty whether the references to sleep found in the fragments are metaphorical at all. The conclusion is that this uncertainty is non-accidental and is to be connected to a more general ambiguity in Heraclitus writings concerning the question whether his perspective is normative or descriptive. Moreover, it is claimed in the paper that Heraclitus's lack of clarity corresponds to an even more general ambivalence with which Greek culture regarded sleep and dream in their literal sense and which appears much more clearly in Plato for whom (following Heraclitus) the metaphor of dream had not only a negative meaning but also a positive one (in the sense of pre-cognition). In the subsequent tradition, however, what primarily obtains is rather the negative meaning through which both authors together influenced the subsequent use of the metaphor, as seen, for example, in the case of Philo of Alexandria.
8
Content available remote Filozofia jako meditatio mortis (Platon – Montaigne)
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Filo-Sofija
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2006
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tom 6
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nr 6
43-58
EN
The idea of philosophy as meditatio mortis is illustrated with the examples of Plato’s and Montaigne’s views. According to Plato, life within body is a kind of evil, and death is the way of release and return to divine life. Philosophy regarded as seeking the truth is at the same time an exercise in dying because it consists in taking off reason from body and senses. Philosophy as meditatio mortis is then preparing to true and eternal life. According to Montaigne, death is the necessary end of human existence, which we should accept without reservation and fear. Philosophy lies in preparing to death as a natural biological event, common to all living creatures. Human dying should be liberated from all ceremonies and cultural rituals because they are the main reasons of our fear and prevent us from accepting death as a natural event.
EN
This paper focuses on the crafting of the mortal type of the human soul in the Timaeus. The demiurge entrusts to his divine assistants the forging of this mortal type – consisting of two “parts”: the irascible-aggressive (thumós) and the desiderative-appetitive (epithumía) – in order to enable the connection of the immortal soul, coming from the first mixture, with the mortal body. The immortal, i.e. divine soul, was sowed and produced by the demiurge himself to animate the world as a whole, and so were the stars. Additionally, auxiliary demiurges make the plants, which also possess a soul (the type which is present in living beings); they serve as food for men, without transgressing the process of transmigration of souls established by the gods.
EN
In Plato's philosophy the concept of knowledge plays an outstanding role. This contribution will show that Plato focused on this topic already in his early dialogue Protagoras. In particular the discussion about the sophistic concepts of knowledge forms the thread of this dialogue. In its first part Socrates examines the common prejudices about sophistic knowledge. His phenomenology of learning (a process of 'getting wiser') points out that knowledge is always the knowledge of something. The substance of knowledge (the mathēma) can be isolated from individual persons knowing something. Socrates underlines that human psyche feeds on mathēmata. Therefore, it is of vital importance to distinguish useful knowledge from harmful knowledge. The second - more comprehensive - part of the Protagoras offers a critical synopsis of types of sophistical knowledge. In particular, the concepts of polumathiē, of rhetorical skills, of poetological language competence and of political knowledge are discussed. In the third and final part of the dialogue Plato presents his own concept of knowledge, named ''the art of measuring''. This metretikē technē is a type of practical knowledge relating decisions based on momentary phenomena to the consequences of future actions. This kind of knowledge aims at insights preventing our loss of ethical intuitions, which in principle we have at our disposal.
EN
In this paper, I suggest a way of resolving the whole-part dilemma suggested in the Parmenides. Specifically, I argue that grabbing the second horn of the dilemma does not pose a significant challenge. To argue for this, I consider two theses about Forms, namely, the oneness and indivisibility theses. More specifically, I argue that the second horn does not violate the oneness thesis if we treat composition as identity and that the indivisibility thesis ought to be reinterpreted given Plato’s later dialogues. By doing so, I suggest a compositional understanding of Plato’s theory of Forms, which can resolve the whole-part dilemma.
EN
The article suggests that the Protagoras could be read as an exposition of a particular model of philosophy. On this account, the dialogue appears to equate philosophy with rational discussion. Obviously, the Protagoras does treat of the teachability of virtue, but the major problem that seems to occupy Plato in the dialogue is the idea that philosophy is a rational exchange of opinions. That is why the confrontation between Socrates and Protagoras ends neither in the philosopher's prevalence over the sophist nor the other way round. For similar reason, Socrates seems at times to transform into Protagoras, while the sophist may occasionally sound more like his opponent. The rationale behind these strange developments is that the genuine protagonist of the dialogue is logos as the epitome of philosophical method proper. Thus, the philosophical method of a dialectical conversation triumphs over the sophistic monologue. The philosophical dialogue between Socrates and Protagoras yields no definitive result, for it is supposed to show that the only legitimate guide in life is reason which transpires to be the measure of all opinions.
EN
The aim of the paper is to analyse the Great Speech which is part of the dialogue Protagoras, principally the problem of dēmiourgikē technē and politikē technē. The existence of some other technai is researched as well as their relationship, their significance and objective. The questions are investigated: Is the virtue part of human nature or not? Can we find such technē that is able to make people good at deliberation and at capability to master one`s own life as well as other people’s life?
14
Content available remote Antyczne źródła pojęcia mimezis
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Filo-Sofija
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2005
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tom 5
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nr 5
45-64
EN
In this article I show the evolution of meaning of the term ‘mimesis’ in ancient Greece. I distinguish its two basic meanings: copying (imitation) and expression. The older meaning (mimesis as expression) comes from the Pythagorean tradition, whereas the newer one (mimesis as copying) can be traced back to the philosophy of Plato. Analysis of Plato’s dialogues step by step reveals ambivalence of the notion, and, what is most important, points out how useful it can be in epistemology, philosophy of language, psychology and aesthetics.
Filozofia (Philosophy)
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2018
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tom 73
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nr 2
133 – 144
EN
A passionate discussion between Roger D. Masters and Anton Hermann Chroust concerning the case of Aristotle’s missing dialogues, namely The Stateman and The Sophist (commonly attributed to Plato), started in the second half of the 20th century on the pages of the scientific journal Political Theory. Masters offered two assumptions on the authorship of the dialogues which gave rise to the whole polemic: A) the author of the fourth to sixth books of Aristotle’s Politics is Theofrastos; B) Plato’s Stateman and Sophist are works of the young Aristotle. The aim of this paper is to confront Masters’ and Chroust’s arguments with the arguments from Aristotle’s Politics and Plato’s dialogues. On the basis of the textual evidence we will try to determine which of the two authors offers stronger arguments.
EN
This study investigates Plato's so-called theory of ideas. The starting point of the investigation is an analysis of the first part of the 'Parmenides', where Parmenides presents a broad and thorough criticism of ideas. This analysis shows, firstly, that the usual rendering of the Greek terms 'eidos' and 'idea' as 'Idea' (in a metaphysical or Platonic way) is misleading and that it is more appropriate to render these Greek terms using the phrases 'characteristic kind' or 'generic nature'. In the course of a short excursion into the middle dialogues it is shown that Plato's 'theory of ideas' - that is, Socrates' conception of independent 'Eide' which Parmenides criticises in the dialogue of the same name - has two sources. (1) In the early dialogues the terms 'eidos' and 'idea' denoted the characteristic features common to a group of things - in particular, virtues. (2) In the middle dialogues 'ideas' were conceived above all as objects of knowledge (cf. the doctrine of reminiscence), which accounts for the use of substantialising adjectives and for the qualifier 'in itself' (cf. auto to kalon).
EN
Protagoras belongs to one of Plato’s most commonly staged dialogues of Plato. Ancient Greeks characterized it as agonistic (competitive) and endeictic, i.e., merely hinting at, but not offering the final settlement of the dispute in question. In the dialogue, we face an incredible controversy (agon) between Socrates and Protagoras. While the controversy concerns the value of the Sophist’s teaching of civil virtue for money, it is combined with numerous other themes and tensions which culminate in the philosopher’s ensnaring of his interlocutor. Thus, the dialogue is characterized by its dramatic composition with a (double) prologue, four agons (controversies), a humorous interlude, an ingenious anagnorismos and an epilogue which concludes with a perplexing reversal of Protagoras’ and Socrates’ positions. At the end, there are several remarks about possible interpretations of this and other dialogues of Plato.
EN
The authoress asks two questions. The first, is war really the best action of a polis how the introductory conversation of the 'Timaeus' (19b -c) suggests. The second, has been the Sokrates' desire to see his ideal polis in action fulfilled in the 'Timaeus-Critias' sequence. The approach to the problems seems to be found in the 'Laws', where these two questions are turned to this one: might war be the pattern for a lawgiver.
EN
Animal metaphors have been often used in European culture. Philosophers have used them since antiquity. Animals illustrate thoughts and arguments in their writings. Plato includes an almost complete zoological garden in his dialogues. There are both domestic and wild animals, employed for literary, psychological, didactic or educational reasons. The most famous animal, however, is the tortoise, well known from Zeno of Elea’s defense of the Parmenidean doctrines. The tortoise has been used in the writings of prominent philosophers such as Aristotle, Shaftesbury, Locke, Leibniz, Bergson and Russell.
20
Content available remote Problem istnienia w platonizmie – próba ujęcia metasystemowego
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Filo-Sofija
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2012
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tom 12
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nr 3(18)
103-124
EN
In spite of the apparent opposition to Plato, Aristotle accepted a lot from the thought of his master. The intuition, which plays the key role in the system of Plato, was understood by Aristotle in terms of how we grasp the middle term of syllogism. It is not, therefore, the intuition of being, but the reasoning, departing from the experience (nature’s “intention”), which is the way of the cognition of the ultimate. The teleology of being, which Plato was so keen on finding, was found by Aristotle in the physical world as a counterpart of motion. Alas, Aristotle lost sight of what is most valuable in Plato: the sense of being that transgresses the categories. According to Thomas, being is what is the most perfect in things; so, consequently, what is the proper effect of the Ultimate Cause, and what is Its primary aim. It is better to be, i.e. to exist. Each thing craves for being. Being, however, is, in the Dionysius’ sense, a problem; it might guide us to God, but veil Him before us as well. It is a perfection, but not the Perfection itself, Plato was right at this point.
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