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Paper on Greco-Roman Philosophy
Respond to ONE of the following three questions in an essay. Please use your own ideas and your own words. Your essay should be approximately five paragraphs in length.
- Socrates stated that if a person knows what is good, that person will do what is good. Thus, one of the main tasks of society is to help its people to understand what is good. Do you think that American society today (or some other contemporary society of your choosing) feels that one of its most important jobs is to help young people to understand what is good? If not, what do you think American society is trying to teach its young people?
- Plato felt that the ideal society would be one governed by "guardians," an upper class whose main characteristic would be wisdom. Would American society today (or some other contemporary society of your choosing) fit Plato's idea? In other words, is American society governed by people with wisdom? If not, what personal characteristics does the upper class in America seem to possess?
- Ancient Athenians felt that the most important duty of a citizen was to engage himself in politics -- that is, to spend a good deal of time discussing important topics facing the city-state, and making decisions on those topics. Athenians arranged their society so that other work (household, agricultural, trade) would be done by other people (women, slave, foreigners) so that the citizens would have time to engage in politics. Do you think that Americans today (or some other contemporary society of your choosing) would agree with the ancient Athenians that the most important duty of a citizen is to engage himself in politics? If not, what do Americans see as the most important duty or duties of citizens? How do Americans view politicians?