The Search For Justice Essay

1851 words - 7 pages

The Search for Justice Why would a person make a statement that he does do not believe in? To see how others rebut your statement. This is the approach Glaucon employs. After listening to Thrasymachus Glaucon is not satisfied with the argument on either side of the true definition of justice.Tharsymachus and Polymarchus have departed from the discussion and Socrates, Glaucon, and Adeimantus are left to continue the debate. The dialogue of the second book is more an intellectual excercise than the previous book. Glaucon decides to takes a postion contrary to his own for the sake of argument and is eager to hear Socrates demonstrate his reactions on justice by opposing Socrates. Glaucon wants to hear anyone defend justice the way he wants hoping that they might arrive at a more satisfying conclusion that justice is better than injustice. There are three assessments that reflect upon Glaucon's position of what good justice is, in Book II of the "Republic". First I will discuss Glaucon's account of the origin of justice within the state, Second I will discuss Glaucon's argument why people practice justice unwillingly, next I will discuss that the life of the unjust person is better that than of the just person, and finally critically evaluate the standpoint Glaucon presents.First, Glaucon has a disposition on the origin of justice within the state. According to Glaucon, "to do injustice is naturally good and to suffer injustice bad and there are people incapable of doing injustice that have experienced both".1 Glaucon's assertion that justice is a legally enforced compromise between doing injustice to others and having injustice done to oneself. So beneficially there becomes an agreement neither to do injustice nor suffer it. Given complete freedom to act as we see fit, we act for our own interests, even if this meant acting against the interests of others. Justice is manifested in the ideal of perfect human function. But more importantly, he must show how it is manifest. Indeed, he must indicate what it means to say that justice is the crowning achievement of the human enterprise, and he must indicate how injustice operates as an obstacle to human fulfillment. If we assume that everyone is rational but self-interested, then we can see why they would still want to set up a just order, some system of laws or conventions that command people to act justly.The best is to do injustice without paying the penalty, the worst is to suffer it without being able to take revenge.2 Justice becomes the mean between these extremes. Each such person has reason to prefer a just order over unrestricted aggression, which is the only other available option. This is because while it would be better for oneself if they could commit injustice at will on other people than if they had to behave justly. It would be far worse for oneself if they became the victim of other people's unjust actions. While each person thinks the very best situation would be to be able to commit...

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