Akrasia in Greek Philosophy (Philosophia Antiqua) by Destrée, P. (ed.), Bobonich, Ch. (ed.), Christopher

By Destrée, P. (ed.), Bobonich, Ch. (ed.), Christopher Bobonich, Pierre Destree

The thirteen contributions of this collective supply new and hard methods of interpreting recognized and extra missed texts on akrasia (lack of regulate, or weak point of will) in Greek philosophy (Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, the Stoics, Plotinus).

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Nonrational desire need not enter the explanatory picture. But before we accept the traditionalist’s understanding of Socrates’ position, we would do well to take a closer look at just what endows an object with the power of appearance. As we have seen, the clear suggestion of Socrates’ account of how the craft of measurement saves us is that proximity to the agent plays a crucial role in the explanation. 8 thomas c. brickhouse and nicholas d. smith Socrates’ examples—size, depth, number and sounds (Protagoras 356c5–8)— certainly lead one to think that the sort of proximity he has in mind is spatial proximity.

Gorgias 507c8–e3)22 Here it could not be clearer that having resistible, well-disciplined appetites is necessary for self-control after all. If so, the reason that the self-controlled person ‘stands fast end endures where he should’ is because his appetites are not so powerful as to prevent him from reasoning effectively about what is best. If they were too powerful, he would ‘reason’ that pursuing the lure of pleasure is best for him, and so would act disgracefully. ’ To say that Socrates believes that virtue requires that appetites or passions be disciplined and controlled is not to say that he thinks that one who is hungry, tired, or fearful feels nothing.

She thinks this untrue; ‘commitment to separation [‘capacity for independent existence’: 255–6] is as muted in the middle dialogues as lack of commitment to it is in the Socratic dialogues’. ‘Separation is not, however, the only feature Aristotle points to in differentiating Plato from Socrates; and perhaps other of his claims are on firmer ground. Aristotle also claims, for example, that for Socrates, unlike Plato, all universals are sensible, that is, are sensible properties. Now Plato, as we have seen, accepts NR [non-reducibility]; forms are nonsensible properties, properties non-reducible to, and indefinable in terms of, sensible properties’ (Fine, 2003, 298).

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