Essay about Comparing Plato 's The Symposium

Essay about Comparing Plato 's The Symposium

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Plato’s The Symposium creates an atmosphere that attempts to justify love in a way that excludes women in order to substantiate Plato’s belief that men are more intellectually capable than women. The constant explanation and praise of love among men not only illustrates Plato’s view that males are superior, but it also reveals his reverence for relationships between men as opposed to relationships between men and women. In addition, while the Symposium focuses on a sense of love that yearns to find completion, it also uses Aristophanes to explain that regardless of the gender of an individual, each person seeks to find completion in their own sense, however, Plato maintains a strong point of view towards the love shared among men.
Plato structures the Symposium in a way that shows his preference for relationships that stimulate the mind, which he believes are exclusively relationships between men. Throughout the text, the word woman is rarely mentioned, and when it is mentioned, it is quickly disregarded, creating a sense of disinterest. Plato contends that any love or sexual act involving a female is unworthy and incapable of intellectual exchange, a strong asset held solely by males in the Symposium. Aristophanes states “That’s why a man who is split from the double sort (which used to be called “androgynous”) runs after women. Many lecherous men have come from this class, and so do the lecherous women who run after men” (page 882). If a man goes after a women, he is seen to be vulgar, simply seeking sex that would benefit him in no way. The word choice “lecherous” creates this idea that men who chase after women are wasting their time and thus are disgraceful. Following the vague description, Aristophanes speaks about women...

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...s constructed in a way that illustrates the love shared amongst men as the strongest love, constantly disregarding the female as having any significance. Humans are born incomplete and they will never be whole, however, they 're wholeness is represented by their strong sense to strive for immortality. Plato constantly attempts to explain the significances of intellectual exchange, which occurs through love, however, he emits a strong sense of masculinity by constantly ignoring the existence of women in the role of love. Throughout The Symposium, the readers are constantly reminded of the beauty that exists within intellectual exchange, which the woman cannot offer. Plato clearly devalues the capabilities of women and robs them of having any significance as he goes on to devalue the worthiness of childbirth when compared to the intellectual exchange between males.

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