Depiction of the Guardians/Gods/Heroes• Socrates continues his conversation in saying that there needs to be supervisionon stories/music/poetry regarding the depiction of guardians and heroes. Hesuggests that if it’s not regulated, one would come to know death as frightening,combat as suffering. Basically he is saying that any stories that paint death (orHades in particular) in a negative light would create warriors with no sense ofcourage. He discusses the need to teach these powerful, future heroes to be justthat, heroes. To Socrates, courage is a thing that is taught, especially through theliterature of those before them.
A hero does not fear death or combat, for he livesto protect and honor the state.• Furthermore, any pleasures (like drunkenness) shouldn’t be discussed either, formen will see this as something they can indulge in, leading them away from thisidea of obedience. They want to educate the youth in how to be moderate andtemperate so they will learn to be strong and not give in to temptation, which willfollow them in their lives as guardians.• (p67, 387 b1) Socrates discusses how it does matter how poetic something is,how enjoyable it is, for the good of the society is more important.
I think this isinteresting because I would normally think something beautiful must be good,something beautiful must be shared. But Socrates creates an interesting conceptof what is good. The state is only as good as the men defending it, and thebeautiful poetry of Homer seems to just seems make them worse. Thus, we seethe need for censorship, a concept that one would (in our time now) wouldnormally point out as a bad thing.2. The form of the stories is just as important as the content.
• Socrates explains that narration comes in three forms:• narration that is both simple and imitative (mixed)• narration that is simple and without imitation• narration that is the entirely imitative•Eventually we understand that the imitation forms of stories must beremoved from the state because the Guardians are to be trained intemperance and to mimic only the good, for if you pretend to be somethinglong enough, you slowly become said thing. Almost how if you use a slangterm long enough, it ends up just becoming a part of your normal vocabulary,you lose the comedic/ironic aspect of it’s use all together.I think it’s interesting on page 78, 397a how Socrates explains how a speakerthat is more willing to narrate anything becomes inferior.
Which is so•Natasha T. Rossi:intriguing because one usually doesn’t think of actors/actresses as beinginferior/superior based off the wholesomeness of the character their playing,does a great actor become just good purely because they’re the antagonist?Does their strength as a person diminish because they accepted anunbecoming role?3. Myth of Metals: The good of the state overrides anything and everything else•While it is surprising to me that Plato’s ideal state is so incrediblyauthoritarian, it makes all the sense in the world that he depicts personalfreedom having almost no value.• The Myth basically explains that:• Gold= fit to rule• Silver= should be auxiliaries• Bronze/Iron= producers• People can be a mix of metals, but the some combinations are dangerous forthe state of the society, some will ruin it all together.
• The way Plato describes this concept and it’s use just outlines what we knowas a class system, decided for your family/you way before theres any hope ofanything better. You have no choice, no say, and no hope of change.