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Plato is one of the greatest philosophers ever Born in Athens in 427 BC and died in 347 BC Socrates taught him Socrates not only taught Plato but was also Platos best friend Socrates was put to death in 399 BC because of his ideas After Socrates death Plato devoted his life to philosophy Plato In Platos book The Republic the main focus is on justice and trying to define what justice exactly is In this book Socrates speaks Platos ideas Through the Socratic method of trying to find a definition of justice the theory of arete is often used and is a central part of the bookArete is the ability of something to do what it is supposed to do and do it well It is virtue skill and knowledge The function of the soul is to live The virtue arete of the soul is to live well Through trying to define justice Plato often uses the concept of areteThrasymachus says that justice is simply what the ruling party calls right or just They call what is in the interest of the stronger party or the rulers justice Grube 338c Socrates responds by saying that the rulers should only by regarded in how well they perform their function Their function being to serve the interest of the people which he rules not his own interest 338cSocrates says that everything has a function The function of a pruning knife is to prune trees the function of the eye is to see Also everything has a virtue a virtue is a quality that makes something perform its function well Thus sharpness is the virtue of a knife sight is the virtue of the eye Now the function of man is to live What then is his virtue Well we agreed that injustice is a source of disunity and chaos so it is a defect Its opposite justice must there fore be a virtue if not the
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