RE: The Plato Thread

November 7, 2021 at 11:31 am
(This post was last modified: November 7, 2021 at 11:35 am by polymath257.)
I really like the Apology, Crito and Phaedo. Beautiful literature.

The Republic is clearly a reaction to the execution of Socrates, preferring the Spartan model of government. Bleh.

I see the parable of the cave as a basic philosophical mistake that has had many bad consequences over the past couple millennia. Beautiful ideas, but ultimately a deep mistake.

Meno has a very interesting argument, from mathematics, about the nature of knowledge and memory. it is interesting to see how the slave arrives at the correct answers, but only through leading questions.

There is also a dialog, I don't recall which one, in which Theatetus mentions that he has a proof that `square roots' are irrational unless the integer is a perfect square. This is interesting as part of the history of mathematical ideas. The discovery of irrational ratios was a blow to the Pythagorean philosophy and the investigation of the concept of irrational ratios by Theatetus was quite important. There is even a quote in Aristotle using Theatetus' definition as opposed to the more well-known definition by Eudoxus. In any case, that Theatetus claims to have a proof is interesting because the only natural proof at that stage would have been one using prime numbers and unique factorization.

The Republic is clearly a reaction to the execution of Socrates, preferring the Spartan model of government. Bleh.

I see the parable of the cave as a basic philosophical mistake that has had many bad consequences over the past couple millennia. Beautiful ideas, but ultimately a deep mistake.

Meno has a very interesting argument, from mathematics, about the nature of knowledge and memory. it is interesting to see how the slave arrives at the correct answers, but only through leading questions.

There is also a dialog, I don't recall which one, in which Theatetus mentions that he has a proof that `square roots' are irrational unless the integer is a perfect square. This is interesting as part of the history of mathematical ideas. The discovery of irrational ratios was a blow to the Pythagorean philosophy and the investigation of the concept of irrational ratios by Theatetus was quite important. There is even a quote in Aristotle using Theatetus' definition as opposed to the more well-known definition by Eudoxus. In any case, that Theatetus claims to have a proof is interesting because the only natural proof at that stage would have been one using prime numbers and unique factorization.