Philosophy Essay on Is Democracy Fundamentally Flawed

PHIL 3
Essay 1: Warnings from Plato’s Republic
Due on Canvas by Monday 11/5 at 11:59pm. One minute late is late.
Pick ONE of the following essay prompts:
1. Is Democracy Fundamentally Flawed?
Explain Plato’s criticisms of democracy in the Republic. Do these criticisms also
apply to American democracy? Why/why not? What can American democracy do to
protect itself from these problems?
2. Is Capitalism Fundamentally Flawed?
“[Is] virtue in tension with wealth, as though each were lying in the scale of a balance,
3. always inclining in opposite directions” (550e)? Is it impossible to have great
wealth/pursue great wealth and still be virtuous? Does this mean that capitalism is
lacking in all virtue?
• What would Plato say?—cite evidence from the text to support your interpretation.
• Explain whether you agree or disagree with Plato.
4. “Living My Best Life”
The Republic ends by talking about an immortal soul and the afterlife as a final
justificationfor living a just life. If you don’t believe in an afterlife of any kind, are
Is Socrates’s arguments for the just life still convincing? In other words, can we still find
reason to live justly if there is no fear of punishment?
Links for inspiration:
https://www.crf-usa.org/bill-of-rights-in-action/bria-19-4-c-plato-and-the-republic
http://bigthink.com/scotty-hendricks/why-socrates-hated-democracy-and-what-we-can-doabout-
it
Guidelines:
• 3 pages, double spaced, 1 inch margins, Times New Roman
• Cite sources using MLA format (Works Cited + in-text citations)
• o Use line numbers when citing Plato—For example, (Plato 347a)
• This is not a research paper—please focus your essay on Plato’s Republic—use
outside
• sources sparingly if at all