The Definition Of Virtue In Plato By Rev. J. Plato

1332 Words 6 Pages
Nguyen 1

Randy Nguyen

Ancient Philosophy

Rev. Joseph W. Koterski, S.J.


In Plato’s Meno dialogue, Meno starts off by asking Socrates what virtue is and whether or not it can be taught. However, Socrates ask Meno if he knows t the definition of virtue, and mentions that virtue cannot be taught if you do not know what virtue really is. Throughout the dialogue, Socrates and Meno mention that virtue is attained in a person. They come up with three possible reasons that virtue can be achieved within the human soul, that it can be taught,
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Meno believes that management is part of virtue, and that the virtue of a woman is to order a household and that the virtue of a man is to order a state or be in charge of his family. From this we see that everyone who has a different role in life whether the person is a kid or an adult that is single or married with a family. Socrates says “ Do you imply that there are some that desire bad things, and others good? Don’t you think, my dear fellow, that all desire good things?” (Plato, Meno p.31). From this you can see that virtue can be found in everything that is good or …show more content…
Meno disagrees and wonders how someone would know what color is if they don’t know what a shape is. Meno also uses the metaphor of a swarm of bees. Socrates points out to Meno that although each bee is different in size and color, they are all bees nonetheless. This shows that knowledge should be taught, in Meno’s view. Meno also answers Socrates that “Virtue is to desire handsome things and to be able to provide them.” (Plato, Meno p.31). Socrates responds to this by mentioning that if a person who desires handsome things also desires good things, what about a person who desires bad things? Meno mentions that a person can desire bad things, since a person who desires bad things believes that it is

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