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Ostenfeld, Erik Nis
Socrates' Argumentative Strategy

2008, e-publikation
ISBN 978-87-635-3473-4
s. 41-98 i:
Classica et Mediaevalia Vol. 59

40 DKK  6 $   5 €




Summary:
The literature on Socratic argumentation has been dominated by generalisations about the strategy of a Socratic conversation (Robinson and Vlastos have led the way, in different directions) or, at the other extreme, recently by total despair of finding a unitary pattern (Polansky, Brickhouse and Smith). In this article I shall attempt to provide a more well-founded picture of Socratic argumentation than has to my mind been offered so far. This is done by a systematic examination of the arguments found in the so-called early dialogues. Briefly the results demonstrate that (1) the overwhelming amount of refutation is indirect (R. Robinson was right and Vlastos wrong); (2) indirect refutation is mainly used to refute definitions of moral terms, whereas direct refutation is used on other (positive) moral theses. This does not exclude indirect refutation from being used also for establishing important moral theses; (3) more than half of the indirect refutations are conducted without the support of external premises (‘basic reductio’); (4) there is a reliance on endoxa in both direct and indirect refutation (‘extended reductio’); (5) there is a methodological development from hypothesis in elenchus to elenchus in hypothesis; (6) we find four distinct patterns of elenctic argument in the texts, three indirect and one direct. Hence I present a defence of Robinson against the influential Vlastos and also a counter-argument against the recent scepticism of e.g. Brickhouse/Smith.

 
Emneområde | Filosofi og psykologi | Græsk-romersk oldtid |
Specifikt emneord | Argumentationsteori |
Biograferet person | Sokrates |
Periode | Klassisk oldtid |
Sprog | Engelsk |









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