Read the assigned reading from the chapter. Then choose ONE of the questions below to answer. Answer the question you chose in a response that is a minimum of 1-2 paragraphs.
Be sure to explain your answers and give reasons for your views. You should cite the textbook and use brief quotations and summaries from the textbook in your response. Do NOT use any other sources besides the textbook.
- Explain Plato’s Utopian vision for a just society. In your view, what would be some of the beneficial or harmful effects of a society based solely on merit, as Plato proposed?
- To determine citizens’ aptitudes and talents, Plato favored testing them while they are young. Is it possible to discover the best career for someone this way? What about people who discover or develop their true talents later in life? Is Plato too optimistic about the ease of discovering a person’s true calling?
- Don’t we reward athletes, doctors, lawyers, and business executives according to their merit and not by democratic vote? Should our leaders be chosen the same way, as Plato suggests? Why or why not?
- Respond to the Philosophy Now exercise questions on page 363 concerning “Merit or Equality: Who Gets to Live?”
- Hobbes believes that there is no such thing as justice until the Leviathan is established. This means that justice does not exist independently of an authority to define and enforce it. Explain why you agree or disagree with this view.