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Socrates Founding Political Philosophy in Xenophon's "Economist", "Symposium", and "Apology"$
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Thomas L. Pangle

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226642475

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226642505.001.0001

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Teaching Socrates How a Gentleman Educates His Overseers

Teaching Socrates How a Gentleman Educates His Overseers

(p.85) Chapter Five Teaching Socrates How a Gentleman Educates His Overseers
Socrates Founding Political Philosophy in Xenophon's "Economist", "Symposium", and "Apology"

Thomas L. Pangle

University of Chicago Press

The freedom and the gentlemanliness that the gentleman’s lawful regime produces is more paternalistic, and much more profit-loving, than the freedom and gentlemanliness that is aimed at by the lawful regime of Sparta (see The Regime of the Lacedaemonians), or that is produced by the lawful regime of Xenophon’s imaginary improvement on Sparta, the old Persia depicted in the Education of Cyrus. On the other hand, the gentleman’s regime aims more unambiguously at gentlemanly freedom than does the democratic regime of Athens, under which gentlemen live in a somewhat embattled position. And for a Socrates, there might well be a more hospitable place in the gentleman’s regime than there would be anywhere in the regime of Sparta or even of old Persia. Taking this into account, or with a view to both what is good for the philosopher and what is good for the citizen, the gentlemanly regime might well appear a happy mean between Sparta and Athens. We may also note that in its virtuous paternalism the kingly regime of Ischomachus foreshadows somewhat the virtuous kingship that is articulated as the simply best political regime in Aristotle's Politics (Bk. 3 end).

Keywords:   moral education, civic education, monarchy, aristocracy, rule of law

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