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Durham e-Theses
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Persuasion and compulsion: principles of the constitution in Plato's Laws

Yu, Нуеоk (2005) Persuasion and compulsion: principles of the constitution in Plato's Laws. Masters thesis, Durham University.



This thesis expounds a central and distinctive feature of Plato's Laws: the coupling of the idea of a law-code as an embodiment of an ethical framework for communal life, with an emphasis on Plato's use of persuasion as a means of recommending the code to individuals within the community and inviting them into philosophical engagement with the law and society. The main task of this work is to specify each of the contexts in which persuasion is being used and to analyse persuasion as used in the Laws. It reveals that persuasion and legal force can be combined harmoniously to contribute to the improvement of people's mind and moral consciousness, and thus to draw people's willingness to follow the law voluntarily. But more emphases will continue to be laid upon persuasion, as cultivation of virtuous and autonomous citizens (and bringing up the legislators in the future generation) is one of the ultimate aims of the whole legislative project in the Laws. Therefore, persuasion in the Laws is not merely persuasive (rhetorical) but also fundamentally philosophical; the Laws itself is designed to open the way to practise philosophy.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Arts
Thesis Date:2005
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:08 Sep 2011 18:30

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