Review Questions On The Republic Book I

1. What is the first answer given to the main question and who gives it? What observations can we make about this character? Do you think it significant that this character is chosen to give the first answer? Why or why not? How does Socrates answer this first proposal?

2. What view of justice does Polemarchus, following the poet Simonides, offer at first? In what small way does he modify it?

3. Briefly reconstruct the argument from the nature of justice as a craft that Socrates gives from approximately 332c-334c. What, precisely, is implied by Polemarchus’s view about justice, according to Socrates’s argument? How does Polemarchus respond?

4. Thrasymachus claims that acting unjustly is a virtue because it is profitable and that acting justly, while not a virtue, is unforgivably naïve. What do you think of this claim of Thrasymachus’s? Is he right or wrong and why?

5. Socrates responds to the last claim of Thrasymachus by giving two arguments. One of these has to do with functions. Briefly recount this argument. How would you characterize Thrasymachus’s behavior throughout this passage?

6. How does Book I end? Does Socrates claim victory over Thrasymachus? What do you make of the ending of the dialogue between Thrasymachus and Socrates?

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License