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Word Count: 1,230
Platos strategy in the Republic is to explicate the primary notion of societal or political justice and then parallel it to the concept of individual justice Before he can prove that justice is a good thing Plato must first state its definition by showing justice in its perfect form in order to discover the true essence of it Therefore Socrates claims that the only way to have a perfect state is if the state has a perfect leader thus he introduces the concept of the philosopher-king Plato identifies political justice as harmony in a structured political body An ideal state consists of three main classes of people producers auxiliaries and the guardians rulers a state is just when relations between these three classes are right Justice is a principle of specialization a principle that requires that each person fulfils the societal role to which nature fitted him or her and does not interfere in any other business Socrates describes philosophers as those who love the sight of truth 475-e He claims that what makes philosophers different from lovers of sights and sounds is that they apprehend the Forms While lovers of sights and sounds love beautiful things they are unable to see the nature of beauty itself The Philosophers on the other hand believe that beauty exists and can see both it and the things it participates in In order to back up this claim that only philosophers can have knowledge Socrates paints a metaphysical and epistemological picture He divides the concept of knowledge into what is what is not and an intermediate between being and not being This intermediate between knowledge and ignorance is what he defines as an opinion and casts it as a fallible power Furthermore knowledge is the strongest infallible power that is set over the being or what is Given that only philosophers can have knowledge Socrates emphasizes that they are clearly the ones best able to grasp
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