Republic (Plato)

Read this summary of Plato's Republic. Pay particular attention to the summary of Books 6,7, and 8; the Theory of Universals; to the definition of justice; and to the Ideal City. What are the four types of government which Plato rejects, and why does he reject them?

Socrates elaborates upon the immediately preceding Analogies of the Sun and of the Divided Line in the Allegory of the Cave, in which he insists that the psyche must be freed from bondage to the visible/sensible world by making the painful journey into the intelligible world. He continues in the rest of this book by further elaborating upon the curriculum which a would-be philosopher-king must study. This is the origin of the quadrivium: arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and music.

Next, they elaborate on the education of the philosopher-king. Until age 18, would-be guardians should be engaged in basic intellectual study and physical training, followed by two years of military training. However, a correction is then introduced where the study of gymnastics (martial arts) and warfare – 3 plus 2 years, respectively – are supplanted by philosophy for 5 years instead. Next, they receive ten years of mathematics until age 30, and then five years of dialectic training. Guardians then spend the next 15 years as leaders, trying to "lead people from the cave". Upon reaching 50, they are fully aware of the form of good, and totally mature and ready to lead.