Discussion Questions on Books 2-4 of the Republic

1. Who should rule? Why should one expect those who are selected to rule well?

2. What is the point of the myth of the gold, silver and brass and iron (p. 21)?

3. Why should rulers own no property? Isn't that unfair to the rulers? Why would anyone be willing to be a guardian?

4. What are the main differences between Plato's ideal republic and Athens in Plato's era?

5. Plato supposes that there are four principal virtues of both a state and a person -- wisdom, courage, temperance, and justice. What constitutes the wisdom, courage, and temperance of a state?

6. In what consists the justice of Plato's republic? How does the justice of the republic connect up with the popular view of justice as giving each his due?