The Republic

Dominic Scott

in The Oxford Handbook of Plato

Published in print August 2008 | ISBN: 9780195182903
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Philosophy

The Republic

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The Republic happens to be Plato's most important work. The article throws light on Plato's Magnum Opus. The debate rages over the idea of a city; rather an ideal city state comprising three classes—producers, auxiliaries, and guardians. The first to provide for the material needs of the state, the second for its defence, and the third to rule. Each has a specific function of its own, and none is to interfere with the others. Above all, the just city will be unified, ordered, and harmonious. The rulers and auxiliaries, the two classes Socrates discusses at most length, will be dedicated to protecting the good of the state as a whole, and every aspect of their education, as well as the conditions, under which they live, will be minutely engineered to ensure they fulfil their roles as best they can. In a particularly famous passage, Socrates devotes considerable attention to the arts, proposing radical censorship of the kinds of poetry and music to which will be applicable in the city-state or the Republic that Plato has idealized.

Keywords: Republic; Magnum Opus; city-state; ideal; auxiliaries; radical censorship

Article.  12010 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Classical Philosophy ; Social and Political Philosophy

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