Academic Information Peng Lei: Socrates and Family

2020-06-23 | By Historian | Filed in: District.

Socrates and the Family

2020On the evening of June 20, 2002, the 39th lecture of “Classical Studies Forum” of Zhejiang University was broadcast live online for the first time on Tencent Conference and Serge Mile Platform. This lecture was given by Peng Lei, Associate Professor of the Faculty of Literature of Renmin University of China, on “SugraThe bottom and the family “, Zhejiang University Philosophy Department Professor Lin Zhimeng presided over, many teachers and students inside and outside the school participated in the lecture. This online lecture, Tencent meeting more than 200 people, serge mile platform nearly 3000People watched the live broadcast.


At the beginning of the lecture,Mr. Peng introduced the lecture by comparing Chinese and Western family concepts.. Compared with China, the West attaches more importance to city-states than families. The West regards city-states as human purposes, but the Western thought did not neglect the family at the beginning. Perhaps here in Socrates, we can find the source of disregard for the family. Teacher Peng Lei first introduced Socrates’ family situation with the help of Plato and Xenophon. Plato mentioned Socrates’ parents, son and wife. In Plato’s Phado, Socrates showed his warmth to his family before he died. In general, Xenophon and Plato described Socrates’ family similarly, but Xenophon made great efforts to describe Kesanteppe as a shrew, which became the main source of the story of Socrates and his fierce wife in later generations. However, neither Plato nor Xenophon described Socrates’ relationship with slaves, so Socrates was a man who did not cure his family property.

Secondly, Teacher Peng explained why Socrates was accused of destroying his family. In Memories of Socrates, the accuser accused Socrates of “insulting his father” and “despising other relatives”. Fathers and relatives are people with authority by law.But in Socrates’ view, those who should enjoy authority are wise people. However, Socrates is not teaching all people to “insult their father” and “despise other relatives.” His views are aimed at a few people gathered around him, rather than trying to spread the respect for wisdom.


Later, Mr. Peng borrowed China’s concepts of “filial piety” and “filial piety” and focused on Socrates’ discussion of the family. In Memories of Socrates, the content related to family is far less than that related to friends.This shows that Socrates actually thinks that family is not as important as friends.. In the dialogue with his son, Socrates regarded “negative kindness” as injustice, thus guiding his son to respect his mother. Socrates listed three reasons-parents have given their children a good life, parents, especially mothers, have worked hard in the process of giving birth, and parents have provided education for their children. However, compared with “Qi Jia”, we can find a more comprehensive view of marriage. “Qi Jia” reveals that marriage includes consideration of property and children, which actually has self-serving purposes. Therefore,In Memories of Socrates, Socrates tries to inspire his son’s gratitude to his mother, thus exaggerating the kindness of his parents to his child.. Socrates also showed that people need friends, and mothers are the best helpers for children. If you don’t honor your parents, you will be punished by city-state laws. Socrates also reminded his son to pay attention to the opinions of the gods and people, otherwise he would lose his friends. Therefore,Socrates’ teaching of his son finally settled in the city-states and gods.

In another story of Socrates persuading brothers to contradict each other, Socrates appealed to mutual benefit and gratitude for the kindness of his brothers, which means that Socrates persuaded not by blood ties but by friendship.Socrates’ exposition of family ethics did not prove its rationality from filial piety and filial piety itself. The common logic of his argument is that people need helpers and friends, that is, the consideration of interests, thus canceling the meaning of blood relationship itself.. In Socrates’ view, friends are more important than family.Because friends can take the initiative to choose, more in line with people’s soul and temperament, is a rising relationship, while relatives cannot choose

Finally, Teacher Peng talked about Socrates’ discussion on managing a family. In “Qi Jia”, Socrates’ discussion on managing a family mainly focuses on economy and politics, rather than on its ethical level as Confucianism did. In Socrates’ view,The purpose of running a family is to increase one’s own property.. Socrates’ main discussion is how to make money. Socrates attached great importance to agriculture, which contained criticism of Athens’ maritime trade at that time. As for the political aspect of governing the family, Socrates denied the difference between governing the family and governing the state.The implicit view is that Socrates believed that the rule of the state ruler over the people should be similar to the rule of the king exercised by the family ruler.


For Mr. Peng’s wonderful lecture,Professor Lin ZhimengTo conclude:

Teacher Peng Lei elaborated the relationship between Socrates and his family from four aspects, which made us fully feel Socrates.Pyrotechnic gasOn the one hand, in reality, it is veryLovely and touchingThe side of. Our impression of Socrates will stay in the image created by Plato. He often talks about more abstract issues such as ideas, knowledge, one and many, various virtues, the best political system, etc. Plato did not pay much attention to Socrates’ private life. Socrates in Xenophon’s works seems to have a stronger flavor of life. Mr. Peng first showed how Plato and Xenophon’s Socrates treated the family, and then proposed that Socrates was accused of destroying the family because he subverted it by taking knowledge and wisdom as the criteria for judging the height of father and son.Ethical relationship

In particular, Mr. Peng showed Socrates’ right toFilial pietyThe view of. Although the children were extremely dissatisfied with their mothers, Socrates taught their parents grace and kindness from the perspective of ethics. Just as Socrates can easily deal with others by learning to deal with such a difficult wife. If a son can tolerate such a mother, he can also tolerate anything else. This actually implies thatFamily and PhilosophyThe internal connection of. Socrates also pointed out that disobedience to mother may also bring danger to political rule. Teacher Peng especially emphasized Socrates’ distinction between blood relationship and non-blood relationship, which can also be seen.Blood (Family) and Goodness (Philosophy)The conflict between.

As can be seen from Socrates’ teaching of his son how to honor his mother, he is not the kind of person who subverts customs and ethics described by Aristophanes. Socrates conscientiously fulfilled the earthlyCivic obligations: Marry a wife, have children, raise and obey the laws of the city-state. He was executed and refused to escape from prison. Xenophon highlights Socrates as a good citizen. If we look at the dialogue with Plato, we can also see Socrates as a good citizen.Legislator’s teacher and contemplative philosopher’s faceTo SocratesTriple identityThere will be a deeper body odor.

Finally, the two teachers discussed Plato’s and Socrates’ different views on marriage and the relationship between family and philosophy online. In the audience’s question-and-answer session, Mr. Peng and the audience had a full and heated discussion on the different types and situations of Socrates or Plato’s brotherly relationship, Aristotle’s and Socrates’ different understanding of the relationship between the family and the state.


(Zhang Xiao/Wen Cui Congcong/Photo)

This article is reproduced from the public number: Classical Studies Forum


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