The Republic, By Plato

2010 Words May 23rd, 2016 9 Pages
In The Republic, Plato presents a dialogue of Socrates, in which he seeks to uncover truths about what constitutes a just society, and what kind of men would rule such a society. As such a society would require a sound government, Plato, through Socrates, presents five possible types of governments, which involve varying levels of liberty and justice. Although the arguments demonstrate that aristocracy is the ideal form of government, all forms of government have fatal flaws that lead to continual replacement by other forms.

Tyranny, as basically defined in The Republic, is the rule of a tyrant. According to Plato, a tyranny degenerates from a democracy when a popular charismatic leader gets power that he will not relinquish, so he becomes a tyrant, “protector no longer but tyrant finished and complete” (Plato, 354). Eventually, people would start to hate him- “he becomes more and more detestable to the citizens” (Plato, 364) - and then they would try to overthrow him but could not. The rule of the tyrant is characterized by murder and theft because the tyrant always wants more: “He will abstain from no dreadful deed, no murder, and no forbidden food.”(Plato, 361) The tyrant himself would stay in his house - “he lives for the most part entombed in his own house” (Plato, 366) -because of his fear of his people for all the crimes he has committed against them. An example of this is the rule of Rafael Trujillo of the Dominican Republic. Ostensibly elected in a landslide by…

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