In this paper I dwell on some specific features of Socrates’ protreptic activity as outlined in the writings of Xenophon, Aeschines, and Plato. In these three authors, proptreptics is an activity through which Socrates makes his interlocutors better by a synousia, a “being together” that impacts on both their cognitive and emotional backgrounds. The improvement (the beltion gignesthai) of Socrates' interlocutors determines a modification of their epistemic condition (i.e. a switch from their pretense of knowledge to their admission of the groundlessness of such pretense), which is followed, after a moment of painful disorientation, by an increase of happiness (eudaimonia) and in some cases also of pleasure (hedone). In my paper, I focus on how the other-oriented aspect of Socrates’ protreptic activity, which is widely acknowledged in scholarship, is related to the self-oriented features of his protreptics, which have been only sporadically examined so far. I claim that this very relationship accounts for a peculiar trait of Socrates' eudaimonia, which is not only a rational and/or a psychological state, but also a self-reflexive relationship with an entity that dwells in his interiority and does not coincide with his subjective consciousness. I claim that the welfare Socrates enhances in others depends upon the protreptic features of such entity. Plato, Xenophon and Aeschines agree in relating to such entity Socrates’ ability to improve his interlocutors and thus benefit his city: for Plato, this entity consists in a daemonic voice that prevents Socrates from being killed due to political activity and thus be useful to his companions and to himself; in Xenophon, Socrates is able to promote the virtue of his fellow citizens thanks to the indications coming from this daemonic voice; in Aeschines, Socrates improves the boastful Alcibiades and other interlocutors thanks to an eros deriving from a "divine dispensation" (theia moira).

Eudaimonia e protrettica socratica in Platone, Senofonte ed Eschine: rendere migliori gli altri per essere felici?

stavru, alessandro
2020

Abstract

In this paper I dwell on some specific features of Socrates’ protreptic activity as outlined in the writings of Xenophon, Aeschines, and Plato. In these three authors, proptreptics is an activity through which Socrates makes his interlocutors better by a synousia, a “being together” that impacts on both their cognitive and emotional backgrounds. The improvement (the beltion gignesthai) of Socrates' interlocutors determines a modification of their epistemic condition (i.e. a switch from their pretense of knowledge to their admission of the groundlessness of such pretense), which is followed, after a moment of painful disorientation, by an increase of happiness (eudaimonia) and in some cases also of pleasure (hedone). In my paper, I focus on how the other-oriented aspect of Socrates’ protreptic activity, which is widely acknowledged in scholarship, is related to the self-oriented features of his protreptics, which have been only sporadically examined so far. I claim that this very relationship accounts for a peculiar trait of Socrates' eudaimonia, which is not only a rational and/or a psychological state, but also a self-reflexive relationship with an entity that dwells in his interiority and does not coincide with his subjective consciousness. I claim that the welfare Socrates enhances in others depends upon the protreptic features of such entity. Plato, Xenophon and Aeschines agree in relating to such entity Socrates’ ability to improve his interlocutors and thus benefit his city: for Plato, this entity consists in a daemonic voice that prevents Socrates from being killed due to political activity and thus be useful to his companions and to himself; in Xenophon, Socrates is able to promote the virtue of his fellow citizens thanks to the indications coming from this daemonic voice; in Aeschines, Socrates improves the boastful Alcibiades and other interlocutors thanks to an eros deriving from a "divine dispensation" (theia moira).
Eudaimonia, protrettica, Socrate, daimonion, cura dell'altro
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/1044729
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