Explain whether you agree with Plato and his theories of education.Do you agree with Plato and his theories of education?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

While I find many of Plato's points in his educational dialogue fascinating, I think that his construction of educational philosophy is not able to translate very well into the modern setting. The construction of the student being submissive to the will of the state or of the Platonic understanding of education is a part of this. Elements of Platonic educational philosophy devalue individual action and choice and place primacy on the idea of this structure guiding everything. The presence of castes and stratification that help to determine education is another element of Platonic philosophy that I am not entirely comfortable with. I think that modern constructions of education lend themselves to being more egalitarian and more open to more people. Platonic construction of education creates it as something more applicable to specific castes and groups, something that I could not openly embrace. This helps to develop the notion of a ruling class through education, something that could lead to cataclysmic notions in the modern setting. I think that these ideas are so open to abuse and being twisted for personal benefit in the modern setting that I would have to see more propensity for damage in the Platonic theory of education.


discussion1984 | Student

All I remember is that he thought an elite should rule and receive the best education to rule. He's absolutely wrong, mostly because it's unclear what is due to nature and what is due to socialization/education. Who's to say that a little genius isn't a genius because of where/how he was raised? And even if we could tell what is naturally given, it doesn't follow that because I am less intellgient that I should be a slave.

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