Plato, The Republic by L1UOHD


									                                      Plato, The Republic

Reading Questions
The Divided Line and Book VII

1. What is the Divided Line? (pp. 204-208)

2. The Allegory of the Cave (514-521) is one of the most famous passages from Plato’s The
Republic. Read it carefully to make sure you understand it thoroughly. It may help you to draw
a diagram of the cave.

3. What are the characteristics of the Philosopher King or Queen? (519-521)

4. What kinds of study will lead to an understanding of the eternal forms? (521-534)

5. What is the study of dialect, and why shouldn’t it begin until the age of thirty? (537-541)

Book X

1. What is imitative poetry, and why does Socrates object to it? What do the three kinds of beds
have to do with poetry? (595-607)

2. In the story of Er, how are the just and the unjust rewarded and punished? (614-615)

3. For whom is an afterlife of punishment permanent (615)? Why?

4. After a period of reward or punishment, what must the souls then do (617-618)?

5. What must the souls do before entering a new life (621)?

6. What is the main lesson Socrates makes by telling the "Myth of Er" (620)?

                                  Reading Journal Questions
                                       Books VII & X

1. The "Allegory of the Cave" is referred to by Plato as an eikon “likeness,” which is in the
form of an allegory describing and commenting upon the human condition, its defects
and potentialities. Explain what each of the following elements in the story of the
prisoners in the cave represent in Platonic philosophy: prison, prisoners, shadows on
wall, the escaped prisoner, the outside world and the Sun, ascent from cave to upper

2. Why is it worthwhile to achieve knowledge of the good?

3. To what degree do you believe your college experience has turned your head toward the
light and even taken you out of the cave?

4. Do you concur with Plato that those who have seen the light have an obligation to return back
to the cave?

5. Explain how, in Plato's view, intellectual and moral growth are inseparable. Do you agree?

6. Do you agree with the arguments Socrates makes about the arts? What do you see as the role
of the arts in a society? In the development of an individual?

7. What do you believe are the most important ideas in Plato's Republic? Which have relevance
to you or to our society? Why?


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