at least restrained by the shame he feels, much as children are restrained by shame before they have acquired virtue and self- restraint. "Such a one," says Socrates -- who given Callicles' deaf intransigence now finds himself expatiating monologically -- "can be befriended [prosphilēs] with neither another human being nor a god. He is incapable of communing [koinōnein], and where there is no communion [koinōnia] there is no friendship (philia]" (507E).
It remains for Plato's readers, not this "Callicles" foil for Plato's Socrates, to hear what Callicles cannot and to find corroboration of what they hear in the character of Socrates. It remains for the readers, that is, to reach an understanding of what is displayed in the words aischron,aischynton,anaischynton,ainaischyntia, and in the particular man, Socrates, who speaks of them and their opposites. For Callicles is most of all a spoilsport who himself withdraws from the play of language, the pathos tōn logōn, in which Plato would involve his readers. And with that he withdraws, as he actually does in this dialogue, 17 from the medium in which our ethical understanding is reached and from the community of those philoi who can have understanding of, and show understanding for, each other.
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Publication information: Book title: Hermeneutics and Human Finitude:Toward a Theory of Ethical Understanding. Contributors: P. Christopher Smith - Author. Publisher: Fordham University Press. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1991. Page number: 171.
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