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Socrates’s Defense Of A Meaningful Life In Plato’s Apology
In this paper, I shall argue that The Apology, written by Plato, is Socrates’s statement on what constitutes the meaning of life. Socrates’s defense at his trial is a sustained argument on how “the examined life” is a meaningful life, a life of questioning and conversation about virtue that Socrates is willing to fight for even if it means death. The outline of the paper is as follows. First, a brief synopsis of the background of the story of Socrates’s trial and death will be given. Second, the argument that pertains to the meaning of life will be explicated. Third, a challenge to the argument will be offered, with a response, and finally a conclusion.
Statement About The Story Of The Apology
The Apology is not an apology in the standard English sense of the word. Apology derives from the Greek word apologia which means a defense. As Grube and Cooper mention in their footnote to the text, “there is certainly nothing apologetic about the speech” (20). Ostensibly, Socrates’s defense in the text is a long speech divided into three parts, organized around what would have been the customary format of a trial in Athens in 399 B.C.E....
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