Compare And Contrast Thrasymachus And Injustice

2001 Words 9 Pages
In the Republic, Thrasymachus defines justice as the advantage of the stronger. Socrates refutes this argument by proving that the stronger do not always make decisions to their advantage, that the stronger should not be making decisions that advantage them and that justice is more beneficial to the individual than injustice. In analyzing Thrasymachus’ definition of justice, there are aspects that need to be considered. Firstly, Thrasymachus talks about a group of people – the stronger. Thrasymachus begins his argument by discussing the different types of political systems, but that they all have a ruler in common. The stronger is then defined to be the ruler of a political society who makes laws and decisions. Secondly, …show more content…
As Thrasymachus made the claim that injustice is better because it is more desirable and it is in the individual interest to be unjust, Socrates refutes both claims. Firstly, he proves that justice is something good and desirable. He does this by making Thrasymachus admit that the view he is forwarding promotes injustice as a virtue (348e). With regards to this line of logic, life is portrayed to be a never ending competition to get more money and power. Thrasymachus continues by saying that the most successful in the competition has the greatest virtue. Socrates refutes Thrasymachus by deploying a complex chain of reasoning which leads him to conclude that injustice cannot be a virtue because it is contrary to the virtue of wisdom (350c). Interpreting this statement, Socrates proves that injustice is contrary to wisdom because the wise man who is skilled in some art would never seek to beat out those who posses the same art. The reason why this works as a refutation to the claim of Thrasaymachus is because Socrates makes Thrasymachus concede that an unjust person tries to outdo those like him and unlike him (350c). This concession is damaging to Thrasymachus’ claim because an unjust person is ignorant for outdoing people like him and ignorant people are not just. Secondly, Socrates attempts proves that it is in the individual interest to be just by arguing two things. First, he is able to prove that justice in terms of subscribing to a common set of rules promote the interest of the group. He does this giving the example of an army, a band of robbers or thieves with a common unjust purpose (351c). He continues by saying that these individuals with an unjust purpose would not be able to achieve anything if they were unjust to each other and gets Thrasymachus to agree. This refutation proves that being unjust towards other people can hamper your

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