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The Republic Plato



Introduction

In The Republic, Plato describes the marriage festivals that were held every year to help pro-creativity. The children being born after such festivals did not have their own parents officially. They were treated as the offspring of the state and community. I think that I would refuse to participate in such festivals if I had such an opportunity due to a number of reasons.

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Main Body

1. An idea of the common upraisal of children not born in love was used by Tommaso Campanella in his utopian novel The City of the Sun. As a result, those children did not know what love and care was. Their moral code was rather strange. Their beloved parents were the state. It seems to me impossible to be a developed personality when all emotions are being so unnatural. People need to love a living being; and the family gives them an initial example how to do this. The state cannot form a normally developed individual.

Another aspect of the marriage festival is quite embarassing. In fact, it is a big orgy where people participate without knowing each other. Firstly, I do not think that it is normal from a point of morality and religion. It is necessary to remember that the moral code and religion were very different from those that we face with nowadays. That is why such festivals were not considered as something untraditional. Even though I understand their reasons, I think that I would not participate in such events.

The last reason that makes me think about some negative issues related to a marriage festival is the amount of diseases transferred through an intercourse. The chances of adults and their born children to die were rather high even few years later after such events.

2. Draco was one of the well-known Greek reformers, who published his first set of laws in 621 B. C. These laws bear his name and are synonymous to an extremely violent moral code. There are no original sources nowadays that support an idea that all those laws were violent. However, some of the examples are available to support this opinion.

According to the first law, if a person owing the money or property to another person comes from a lower social class than his/her creditor, the debtor automatically becomes a slave. However, if the creditor himself/herself is from the lower social class, the punishment for this crime is not that strict.

Killing another person is considered to be the most horrible crime. However, a decision whether to prosecute and kill a criminal depends upon the relatives of the victim. Those homicides planned with an intention to slaughter is punished by the death penalty. The person that had killed another man unintentionally could be sent to exile.

The last Draconian law supposes that all men being able to make or buy a military equipment can participate in the elections despite their origin and a social class. This law gave many young and healthy men to raise their social status and become warriors. The latter ones had the certain rights in ancient Greece. It was also an efficient way to create an army that would be well equipped and motivated to fight for their state.

It is a well-known fact that the laws of Draco were severe and violent. However, it is difficult to judge by the set of laws that can be found nowadays. A death penalty for an intentional homicide is still a wide-spread sentence, even though many countries claim that it is unmoral.

3. Hammurabi was a king of Babylon. He is known for the set of laws that were carved on the steles. On these surfaces, the king is depicted with the gods giving him a legislative code. Hammurabi himself is shown like a prophet. The king of Babylon seems to give ordinary people the light of knowledge and the laws that they need to obey. Even though the Hammurabi Code is a set of the first laws, the main point is to show the greatness of their ruler. On the contrary, the Draconian laws do not emphasize the personality of Draco.

The Hammurabi code displays an issue of presumption of innocence for the first time in the world history. According to it, a criminal and an accuser have the right to protect themselves and provide the evidence to support their views. Draconian laws do not have such liberal ideas. They are more oriented on a social class and status. However, they also feature an opportunity of both sides to negotiate and solve a problem peacefully without a homicide.

“An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth” is a well-known principle derived from the set of Hammurabi's laws. This is an idea that was quite widespread in the countries until the appearance of some more peaceful religions like Christianity. This is a pagan principle that supports the right of the strongest one. It can be found both in the Babylonian set of laws and in the Greek one.

In general, the laws created by Hammurabi are less violent and more written in details than the Draconian ones. The steles from Babylon were used as a basis of the classical legal tradition later. This is related to the fact that these laws were more humanistic and detailized in comparison with the Greek reforms.

4. Solomon is known to be a very wise ruler. Two famous laws established by him in the 59th BC support this thought. He made all people in the state pay the national income tax. Moreover, he started a governmental program to support those persons serving in the military. This law corresponds to the modern G. I. Bill. The ideas mwntioned there are used by many countries nowadays. It really makes the society more powerful and independent for several reasons.

First of all, it is necessary to underline that it was one of the first official attempts of the government to create such a state where people were comparatively equal. In such society, everybody would be supported by the government. This model of the state can be called a Sozialstaat or a welfare state. According to this economical model, the budget for various social programs is filled with income taxes. In such a way, those people that earn more pay more. Thus, everybody would be sure that he/she would not die in poverty when he/she was not able to work anymore. In my opinion, this system of financing the social needs is the most optimal because there is no other need in the government and the state. If people need to fight for their welfare till their last breath, they could live happily without any rulers.

G. I. Bill is a campaign to support soldiers serving in the military financially after they have returned home. This idea was used by Solomon and aimed at several issues. Firstly, this program raised the status of a soldier in the eyes of the society. Also, the service in the military became prestigious . Secondly, it was an opportunity for poor people to raise their social position. Thirdly, he built a strong army of active and motivated men being willing to fight and die for their state. They were grateful for everything the country had given to them.

5. The culture of anciet Greece is important for the world’s cultural development, because it has become a basis for the main ideas used by the philosophers, artists and writers of Europe. It seems that everything essential in the European culture has been previously said by the Greeks and later developed.

For example, the utopian ideas of Thomas Mor, Tommaso Campanella or some other socialists of the XIX century were derived from such Plato’s works as The Republic. The democratic thoughts about the equality of all people were firstly mentioned in the works of Aristotle. His thoughts are also used nowadays in the political sciences, literature analysis and the art researches (a notion on catharsis is a key characteristic of the pure art).

The antique drama is called as classical. The whole historical period, i.e. the Renaissance, was the period for recollecting the ideas of ancient Greeks and taking them as an example. The plays written by such classicists like Moliere, Racine, and Cornelle were deriving their structure from the works of Homer.

Summary

Ancient Greece became a cradle for the main philosophical ideas of materialism, idealism, structuralism and some others. The antique philosophers created rhetorics as well as an art of persuasion. They investigated the questions that are not even answered to today; for example,what the God is. The strange thing is that the ideas devoted to the divine matters were combined with such cruel laws as a Draconian moral code. The sophisticated and rhetorically right discussions about the equal rights and democracy were conducted among slaves that even did not have the rights at all. They were not considered and treated as human beings at that time.

The culture of this country is great and dubious. Even now, the researchers investigate the Greek legacy. In general, it is difficult to underestimate what role the ancient Greek culture has played for the modern art, literature and philosophy.

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