Great Dialogues Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. In Book VII Socrates weaves an analogy suggesting that the common man is like________.

2. Socrates is primarily charged with________________.

3. Whom does Socrates think is the fourth (and least) happiest social class of man in the republic?

4. According to Socrates, how should a good philosopher rule?

5. The evil of the soul, explained in Book X by Socrates, is ___________.

Short Essay Questions

1. Which trumps the other, according to Socrates, the laws of Athens or the gods?

2. Why is the tyrannical man the most miserable, according to Socrates?

3. Why does Socrates think philosophers make the best rulers?

4. Why does Socrates say in Book VII that "philosophers don't want to rule"?

5. How does Socrates defend against Meletus' chargers of impiety?

6. Characterize the nature of Socrates' speech in his own defense.

7. Why does Socrates think that the forms of government are like forms in the human soul?

8. Why does Socrates think it acceptable for the state to make philosophers rule if they are unwilling?

9. Describe Socrates view of death and its role for the philosopher.

10. What is the point of Socrates' discussion of evil and injustice after death?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Phaedo Socrates promotes the idea that philosophy is preparing for dying, and that a true philosopher should not fear death but welcome it. Would Socrates then be able to justify suicide as a good thing? Why or why not? Do you think Socrates commits suicide? Why or Why not?

Essay Topic 2

The Republic discusses many grandiose themes such as knowledge, friendship, kinship, love, justice, economics, government, and religion at length. Choose a topic, along the same lines, that Plato missed in his dialogues. See if you can argue, based on text you've already read, how Plato or Socrates would weigh in on the issue. You may use current political debates (health care, euthanasia, abortion) as your topic if you desire. You do not need to to this, however.

Essay Topic 3

Is Socrates a tragic hero? If yes, what are his hubrius and harmartia? If no, why not?

(see the answer keys)

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