65 Matching Annotations
  1. Sep 2013
    1. Now it often happens that a man will admit an act, but will not admit the prosecutor's label for the act nor the facts which that label implies. He will admit that he took a thing but not that he "stole" it; that he struck some one first, but not that he committed "outrage"; that he had intercourse with a woman, but not that he committed "adultery"; that he is guilty of theft, but not that he is guilty of "sacrilege," the object stolen not being consecrated; that he has encroached, but not that he has "encroached on State lands"; that he has been in communication with the enemy, but not that he has been guilty of "treason."
    2. The man who is guilty of adultery or assault is doing wrong to some definite person; the man who avoids service in the army is doing wrong to the community.
    1. thus in Argos a penalty is inflicted on a man on whose account a law is passed, and also on those on whose account the prison was built

      You don't see this style of penalization much anymore.

    2. Again, a man's crime is worse if he has been the first man, or the only man, or almost the only man, to commit it: or if it is by no means the first time he has gone seriously wrong in the same way: or if his crime has led to the thinking-out and invention of measures to prevent and punish similar crimes

      An interesting point. Public outrage sets the initial tone, but lessens as the same crime is committed. Furthermore, that last bit about invention of measure to prevent and punish goes both ways. It allows a representative (also read: Lawyer, Rhetorician) to additionally devise further methods of acquittal.

    1. The same is true of crimes so great and terrible that no man living could be suspected of them: here too no precautions are taken.

      I find this bit amusing. Extremely amusing. It does not seem conceivable in our modern world for something like this to happen. To have someone commit a crime and not be charged due to the fact that it's so terrible that it couldn't possibly have been performed by the accused.

    2. The people to whom he does it are those who have what he wants himself, whether this means necessities or luxuries and materials for enjoyment. His victims may be far off or near at hand. If they are near, he gets his profit quickly; if they are far off, vengeance is slow, as those think who plunder the Carthaginians. They may be those who are trustful instead of being cautious and watchful, since all such people are easy to elude. Or those who are too easy-going to have enough energy to prosecute an offender. Or sensitive people, who are not apt to show fight over questions of money.
    3. You may consider your crimes as bringing you solid profit, while their punishment is nothing more than being called bad names. Or the opposite argument may appeal to you: your crimes may bring you some credit (thus you may, incidentally, be avenging your father or mother, like Zeno), whereas the punishment may amount to a fine, or banishment, or something of that sort.
    4. They are not likely to be found out if their appearance contradicts the charges that might be brought against them: for instance, a weakling is unlikely to be charged with violent assault, or a poor and ugly man with adultery.
    5. Their confidence is greatest if they personally possess the advantages mentioned: but even without them they are satisfied if they have friends or supporters or partners who do possess them: they can thus both commit their crimes and escape being found out and punished for committing them. They are also safe, they think, if they are on good terms with their victims or with the judges who try them. Their victims will in that case not be on their guard against being wronged, and will make some arrangement with them instead of prosecuting; while their judges will favour them because they like them, either letting them off altogether or imposing light sentences.

      An exterior rhetoric of sorts. Having the aforementioned advantages produces a level of persuasion that makes the individual more likable.

    1. Of the modes of persuasion some belong strictly to the art of rhetoric and some do not. By the latter I mean such things as are not supplied by the speaker but are there at the outset -- witnesses, evidence given under torture, written contracts, and so on. By the former I mean such as we can ourselves construct by means of the principles of rhetoric. The one kind has merely to be used, the other has to be invented.

      This strikes me as odd. Specifically, modes of persuasion that do not belong strictly to the art of rhetoric. The listed examples, save witnesses, seem to be something that can be, in one form or another, a rhetorical mode of persuasion.

    2. But rhetoric we look upon as the power of observing the means of persuasion on almost any subject presented to us; and that is why we say that, in its technical character, it is not concerned with any special or definite class of subjects.

      The Meta-Art, or even Meta-Science if we're delving particulars.

    1. Moreover, (2) before some audiences not even the possession of the exactest knowledge will make it easy for what we say to produce conviction. For argument based on knowledge implies instruction, and there are people whom one cannot instruct. Here, then, we must use, as our modes of persuasion and argument, notions possessed by everybody, as we observed in the Topics when dealing with the way to handle a popular audience.

      Reminds of me Isocrates in a strange way. He spoke against the Sophists in that they didn't have a complete knowledge of things teachable. Yet even with a complete knowledge there still isn't a way to reach everyone in your audience. Persuasion without disclosure of complete knowledge seems to win out.

    2. Rhetoric is useful (1) because things that are true and things that are just have a natural tendency to prevail over their opposites, so that if the decisions of judges are not what they ought to be, the defeat must be due to the speakers themselves, and they must be blamed accordingly.

      Coincides with what Gorgias was presumably attempting to say to Socrates.

    3. The weightiest reason of all is that the decision of the lawgiver is not particular but prospective and general, whereas members of the assembly and the jury find it their duty to decide on definite cases brought before them. They will often have allowed themselves to be so much influenced by feelings of friendship or hatred or self-interest that they lose any clear vision of the truth and have their judgement obscured by considerations of personal pleasure or pain.

      Emphasizes our modernized call for Voir Dires and randomly selected jurors.

    4. It is not right to pervert the judge by moving him to anger or envy or pity -- one might as well warp a carpenter's rule before using it. Again, a litigant has clearly nothing to do but to show that the alleged fact is so or is not so, that it has or has not happened. As to whether a thing is important or unimportant, just or unjust, the judge must surely refuse to take his instructions from the litigants: he must decide for himself all such points as the law-giver has not already defined for him.

      I can see why he/they would want litigants to refrain from utilizing any manipulative pathos. Yet, at the same time, I cannot. It's an interesting conundrum that asks a judge to be essentially not human by denying litigants the ability to treat him like one.

    1. Political (1) exhortation and dehortation, (2) future, (3) expediency and inexpediency; B. Forensic (1) accusation and defence, (2) past, (3) justice and injustice; C. Epideictic (1) praise and censure, (2) present, (3) honour and dishonour.
    2. Its possible abuse is no argument against its proper use on the side of truth and justice.
    1. the students who have taken form under his instruction and are able to pattern after him will, from the outset, show in their speaking a degree of grace and charm which is not found in others.

      So there is a call for that aforementioned cadre.

      Us versus them, once again. Our way of teaching is better, and simply not a different perspective/pursuit.

    2. But it cannot fully fashion men who are without natural aptitude into good debaters or writers, although it is capable of leading them on to self-improvement and to a greater degree of intelligence on many subjects.

      He makes it seem as if debating and writing are second-class pursuits.

    3. Formal training makes such men more skilfull and more resourceful in discovering the possibilities of a subject;

      Further empowering the academy

    4. I think all intelligent people will agree with me that while many of those who have pursued philosophy have remained in private life,(16) others, on the other hand, who have never taken lessons from any one of the sophists have become able orators and statesmen.

      Officially switching gears here. We're talking over the laymen, who were probably never invited to engage in this discourse beyond being an example, and now appealing to the truly intelligent. Who were most likely the target audience all along.

    5. For myself, I should have preferred above great riches that philosophy had as much power as these men claim; for, possibly, I should not have been the very last in the profession nor had the least share in its profits. But since it has no such power, I could wish that this prating might cease. For I note that the bad repute which results therefrom does not affect the offenders only, but that all the rest of us who are in the same profession share in the opprobium.

      So is this the part wherein we're supposed to believe that he teaches philosophy just because? If it's not money, what then? A cadre of students that bend ears in pursuit of propagating their own teachings?

      Or is it jealousy?

    6. but undertake to transmit the science of discourse as simply as they would teach the letters of the alphabet, not having taken trouble to examine into the nature of each kind of knowledge, but thinking that because of the extravagance of their promises they themselves will command admiration and the teaching of discourse will be held in higher esteem

      Reminiscent of Gorgias versus Socrates

    7. For they are themselves so stupid and conceive others to be so dull that, although the speeches which they compose are worse than those which some laymen improvise

      Again with the laymen used as the measuring stick. Also more seething animosity between what I still presume is the academy and now everyone else, apparently.

    8. But it is not these sophists alone who are open to criticism, but also those who profess to teach political discourse.

      When he mentioned teachers spouting falsehoods earning the public's ire, I wondered if politics would eventually show up.

    9. When, therefore, the layman puts all these things together and observes that the teachers of wisdom and dispensers of happiness are themselves in great want but exact only a small fee from their students, that they are on the watch for contradictions in words(10) but are blind to inconsistencies in deeds, and that, further , they pretend to have knowledge of the future" but are incapable either of saying anything pertinent or of giving any counsel regarding the present, and when he observes that those who follow their judgements are more consistent and more successful4 than those who profess to have exact knowledge, then he has, I think, good reason to contemn such studies and regard them as stuff and nonsense, and not as a true discipline of the soul.

      I find interesting that he keeps returning to this point that even the layman can see through the ruses of the Sophists, or at least has the capacity to do so. It gives the idea that those that are actually learning from the Sophists are far below the common denominator of intelligence. Beyond saving perhaps?

    10. although they set so insignificant a price on the whole stock of virtue and happiness, they pretend to wisdom and assume the right to instruct the rest of the world.

      I'm seeing a lot of us versus them mentality in the undertones. Curious, though, does Isocrates opt to teach just for the hell of it? For the good of the many? Or is he and the academy being undercut by the sophists?

    11. state the facts

      Whose facts, thought?

  2. caseyboyle.net caseyboyle.net
    1. For, as Euripides says, 'Every man shines in that and pursues that, and devotes the greatest portion of the day to that in which he most excels,'
    2. And this I take to be the sentiment of Pindar, when he says in his poem, that 'Law is the king of all, of mortals as well as of immortals;' this, as he says, 'Makes might to be right,

      A bit of citation here. While poor (also read: pitiable) Polus tried the raw, emotional approach to busting down Socrates, Callicles seems to be taking the more intellectual route.

    3. Rhetoric, according to my view, is the ghost or counterfeit of a part of politics.

      Reminiscent of the section in the Encomium of Helen regarding persuasive discourse used for deception.

    4. POLUS: What sort of an art is cookery? SOCRATES: Not an art at all, Polus.

      Our modern day creators of baked confections would have your head for such words!

    5. For will any one ever acknowledge that he does not know, or cannot teach, the nature of justice?

      Reminds me of Section VI in Dissoi Logoi.

    6. SOCRATES: Well, and is not he who has learned carpentering a carpenter?

      Hefty repetition begins here from an earlier point in the discussion.

    7. SOCRATES: Then, when the rhetorician is more persuasive than the physician, the ignorant is more persuasive with the ignorant than he who has knowledge?—is not that the inference? GORGIAS: In the case supposed:—yes.

      Supports what I mentioned earlier. You don't need to understand it, just convince everyone else you do.

    8. but he who could speak would be chosen if he wished; and in a contest with a man of any other profession the rhetorician more than any one would have the power of getting himself chosen, for he can speak more persuasively to the multitude than any of them, and on any subject. Such is the nature and power of the art of rhetoric!

      Heart of the matter. This is what it is.

    9. When the assembly meets to elect a physician or a shipwright or any other craftsman, will the rhetorician be taken into counsel? Surely not.

      Not a proclaimed Rhetorician, like Gorgias here, no.

      Though, rhetoric would have to show up in the discussions as to who makes the cut in the election. The physician being elected would have to make some sort argument as to why he's the best.

      Rhetorician: The profession within a profession

    10. What is there greater than the word which persuades the judges in the courts, or the senators in the council, or the citizens in the assembly, or at any other political meeting?

      He left off the good qualifier, in terms of what Socrates was saying about the greatest good above. It's not a greater good, it's just greater.

      Also qualitative and moral alignment seem to have no role in Gorgias' definition, whereas I think Socrates is focusing on qualitative.

    11. SOCRATES: Words which do what? I should ask. To what class of things do the words which rhetoric uses relate? GORGIAS: To the greatest, Socrates, and the best of human things.

      I'm still stuck on this. Affixed and fascinated, but not stumped. The idea of attaching meaning to rhetoric is unfurling more and more to be entirely circular in logic.

    12. And to understand that about which they speak?

      I wouldn't go that far. I'm more inclined to believe that rhetoric enables men to speak, and to give everyone else listening the impression the speaker understands that about which they speak.

      Maybe they do understand, but this understanding shouldn't be a prerequisite. An added incentive, as it were.

    13. Why, did I not say that it was the noblest of arts?

      Using rhetoric within rhetoric to make it more... rhetoric?

    1. By this discourse I have removed infamy from a woman;

      Or through some of that aforementioned persuasion discourse, he has tried to remove infamy.

    2. If Love, <being> a god, <has> the divine power of gods, how could the weaker being have the power to reject this and to ward it off?

      More of that faulting divinity instead of ourselves.

    3. If it was love that brought all these things to pass, she escapes without difficulty from the blame for the sin alleged to have taken place.

      Love DOES conquer all, apparently.

    4. The power of discourse stands in the same relation to the soul's organization as the pharmacopoeia does to the physiology of bodies.

      Early jabs at psychology?

    5. Accordingly what cause hinders Helen ... praise-hymn came ... similarly would ... not being young ... just as if ... means of forcing ... force was abducted. For the mind of Persuasion was able ... and even if necessity ... the form will have ... it has the same power.

      Why ellipses? Omission? Redaction? Or simply translation and/or stylistic?

    6. But opinion, being slippery and unsteady, surrounds those who rely on it with slippery and unsteady successes.

      No wonder the Sophist prioritized and valued memory.

    7. And if persuasive discourse deceived her soul, it is not on that account difficult to defend her and absolve her of responsibility, thus: discourse is a great potentate, which by the smallest and most secret body accomplishes the most divine works; for it can stop fear and assuage pain and produce joy and make mercy abound. And I shall show that these things are so: (9) explanation to the audience, by means of opinion, is required. Discourse having meter I suppose and name (in the general sense) to be poetry. Fearful shuddering and tearful pity and sorrowful longing come upon those who hear it, and the soul experiences a peculiar feeling, on account of the words, at the good and bad fortunes of other people's affairs and bodies. But come, let me proceed from one section to another.

      Persuasive discourse tends to further murky the already muddy waters any distinction of morality and Rhetoric.

    8. For he did terrible things; she was the victim; it is accordingly fair to pity her and hate him.
    9. if one must attribute responsibility to Fortune and the god, one must acquit Helen of infamy.

      And if you don't, she remains infamous all the same.

    10. For the will of a god cannot be hindered by human forethought.

      More shifting of the blame. It's all the Gods' fault, isn't it?

    11. And they were all there together out of contentious love and unconquerable ambition.

      All because of this aforementioned unearthly beauty.

    12. Born of such parentage, she had godlike beauty

      We're shifting the blame here. Apparently it was divinity's fault that men couldn't help themselves around her.

    1. For instance, suppose you need to remember the name " Chrysippos ", you must connect it with chrusos (gold) and hippos (horse). (5) Or another example: if you need to remember the name " Pyrilampes " you must connect it with pyr (fire) and lampein (to shine).

      early mnemonic action

    2. The greatest and fairest discovery has been found to be memory; it is useful for everything, for wisdom as well as for the conduct of life.

      And also for establishing precedents.

    3. the man who knows the art of rhetoric will also know how to speak correctly on every subject.

      Hence Lawyers. Oh, and politicians.

    4. and ought to choose suitable people to be in command of the army and others to be the law-officers, and so on.

      And aren't the suitable really unsuitable?

    5. it is that wisdom and virtue can neither be taught nor learned.

      But can it still be acquired?

    6. Because if anyone should ask those who say that the same statement is both false and true whether their own statement is false or true, if they answer " false " then it is clear that the true and false are two different things, and if they answer " true ", then this same statement is also false.

      Liar's paradox?

    7. (1) Two-fold argument's are also put forward concerning the false and the true, concerning which one person says that a false statement is one thing and a true statement another, while others say the true statement is the same as the false. (2) And I hold the latter view : in the first place because they are both expressed in the same words, and secondly, because whenever a statement is made, if things (should) turn out to be as stated, then the statement is true, but if they should not turn out to be as stated, the same statement is false.

      The there is no truth until it's true paradox

    8. My opponents would declare that it is right and just to do these things to one's enemies but disgraceful and wicked to do so to one's friends. But how is it just to do so to one's enemies and not to one's dearest friends?

      The wavy morality of rhetoric in action.

    9. if disgraceful and seemly are really the same thing.

      Reminiscent of Gorgias, "Nothing is or exists."

    10. And I am not saying what the good is, but I am trying to explain that the bad and the good are not the same but that each is distinct from the other.

      Key Point

    11. I think it would not be clear what was good and what was bad if they were just the same and one did not differ from the other; in fact such a situation would be extraordinary.

      And yet we have to make said distinction.

    12. Some say that the good is one thing and the bad another, but others say that they are the same, and a thing might be good for some persons but bad for others, or at one time good and at another time bad for the same person.

      morality and rhetoric