Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press (2015)

Clerk Shaw
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Plato often rejects hedonism, but in the "Protagoras", Plato's Socrates seems to endorse hedonism. In this book, J. Clerk Shaw removes this apparent tension by arguing that the "Protagoras" as a whole actually reflects Plato's anti-hedonism. He shows that Plato places hedonism at the core of a complex of popular mistakes about value and especially about virtue: that injustice can be prudent, that wisdom is weak, that courage is the capacity to persevere through fear, and that virtue cannot be taught. The masses reproduce this system of values through shame and fear of punishment. The "Protagoras" and other dialogues depict sophists and orators who have internalized popular morality through shame, but who are also ashamed to state their views openly. Shaw's reading not only reconciles the "Protagoras" with Plato's other dialogues, but harmonizes it with them and even illuminates Plato's wider anti-hedonism, especially as expressed in the Gorgias and Republic.
Keywords Plato  Protagoras  pleasure  hedonism  virtue  Socrates  literary  shame  sophists  the many
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ISBN(s) 9781107046658   9781107624658   1107046653
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Aristotle and Protagoras Against Socrates on Courage and Experience.Marta Jimenez - 2022 - In Socrates and the Socratic Philosophies: Selected Papers from Socratica IV Claudia Marsico (ed.). Baden-Baden: Academia Verlag. pp. 361-376.
Socrates' Defensible Devices in Plato's Meno.Mason Marshall - 2019 - Theory and Research in Education 17 (2):165-180.
Plato on Well-Being.Eric Brown - 2016 - In Guy Fletcher (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Well-Being. London, UK: pp. 9-19.

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