The Apology By Plato Analysis

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Set during the socratic age of philosophy, The Apology by Plato chronicles the trial of Socrates on the charges of corruption of youth and not believing in the Gods. Plato, a young follower and apprentice of Socrates, documents the trial in its’ entirety from beginning to the unfortunate end in which Socrates is sentenced to death. The Apology is the trial of Socrates on a very basic and literal level but upon further inspection, one comes to realize that not only the philosopher is on trial but philosophy itself. Throughout the piece, Socrates attempts to convince the jury of philosophy’s worth and also criticize the condition of man. Furthermore, the recounting of the trial is also a protest of the hypocrisy within the Greek society that …show more content…
During the first half of his speech, Socrates recounts the tale of his trip to the oracle of Delphi where he was told that he was the wisest man alive. Bewildered by this statement, he set off on a journey to find one wiser than him and continuously drew blank. One consistent trait he found among those considered to be the most wise by society was that they seemed to speak with authority on matters that didn’t concern them or that they did not know much about. Socrates uses this example to highlight a flaw in the human condition; humans often speak about matters that are not in their realm of knowledge to appear wise but this is not real wisdom and is in fact, ignorance. A symbol of true wisdom is one who knows what they know and what they do not and does not claim to be better or smarter than they are. On a more allegorical level, Socrates acts as philosophy itself; philosophy is a study in which not everything can necessarily come to a conclusion and nothing can be assumed. Speaking as if there is a direct answer to philosophical questions or speaking extensively on a topic that one does not know much about is not only pretentious, but also shows a certain level of ignorance of whoever is speaking. If philosophy was on trial defending itself in the eyes of mankind, it would fight against the people who claimed to fully understand the unanswerable questions, and question them on how they know what they think they do; this is precisely what Socrates

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