Case for “Philosopher Queens” in Plato’s “Republic”


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Essay #: 061048
Total text length is 7,699 characters (approximately 5.3 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
Case for “Philosopher Queens” in Plato’s "Republic"
In Book V of the Republic, Socrates argues that (some) women are capable of becoming Philosopher-Guardians, just as (some) men are capable of becoming Philosopher-Kings. In light of Plato’s various comments about women’s “nature” that we find throughout the text, it is worthwhile to ask why Plato makes the case for “philosopher Queens” – and what this tells us about his theory of virtue. The first part of this paper will begin by looking at why Plato believes that women should be taught the same things as men and should participate in the same activities as men; his reasoning appears rooted in the idea that women should help men in the difficult task of caring for the community. Moving...
The end: because they are women – cannot hold various posts. Plato is curiously upholding both patriarchy and free and equal opportunity for both genders: he acknowledges the humanity of women and he acknowledges the ability of some women to do things that other women cannot; however, he still cleaves to the view that men are superior. Perhaps a good way of looking at the matter is that he is of the mind that the best men are still the best of all and the best-suited for leadership; the best men, in short, make the best philosophers or the best leaders or guardians – but there are women who can serve capably as their auxiliaries.
Works Cited
Plato. The Republic. G.M.A Grube, transl. C.D.C Reeve, ed. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company, 1992.