The Accounts Of Eros In The "symposium" Essay

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The Accounts of Eros in the "Symposium"

The word love carries with it many, many different interpretations. In modern day, our views on what is appropriate love is much different from the views from the time of Socrates and Plato. To them love was eros, a direct translation of the word love.

However, the word itself wasn't the only thing that was different about love. In
Plato's "Symposium", there is a celebration for Agathon. He had just won a dramatic contest in Athens, Greece two nights ago. It is customary to drink much wine at these gatherings, however, every one present is too weak from the night before. (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg. xiii) So a proposition is made, by Phaedrus, to properly give praise to the
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She speaks of the way Love was conceived, a clever scheme by a god to escape her misfortunes. It seems the goddess of poverty,
Penia laid down beside Poros and became pregnant with Love (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg.48) This makes Love unique. Love is good, though, because he is a lover of wisdom, that is, he pursues the notion of philosophy. But, he is in between wisdom and ignorance (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg. 49), according to Diotima, which is much different an account from the other speakers. Phaedrus had placed Love at the top of all gods, describing ways in which Love "breathes might into some of the heroes," (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg. 10). This is untrue. However, Diotima speaks of ways in which love helps human beings. This happens when the love for things like sports or poetry helps a person create something from nothing. Love is a word used to describe the whole, where there are special parts of love used to describe specific passions and possessions. (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg. 51). And love is wanting to posses the good forever (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg. 52) Finally we see the main points in Diotima's argument when she accurately describes the real purpose of love. It is almost like a natural instinct. All animals, including humans, have a need to reproduce. The real purpose in love is giving birth in beauty, whether in body or soul (Nehamas & Woodruff, pg.53). This means that the pregnant person causes the baby, or new born idea if the
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