The Crito Analysis

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Plato’s work, The Crito, explores one of the last days of Socrates’ life. This work is set in Socrates’ prison cell, where Socrates is visited by his close friend Crito. Crito is overwhelmed with emotion with the impending loss of his friend, and is attempting to passionately convince Socrates to run away and avoid his sentence set upon him by the court. Crito presents many arguments that would be compelling to most men of his time. Socrates lays out the principles that he has chosen to live his life by and challenges Crito to convince him to leave after considering these principles. Socrates never directly tells Crito he is wrong, but he asks questions that force Crito to ascertain that he is wrong.

Crito’s first set of arguments center around his friends, and the impact of Socrates choosing to accept his sentence would have on them. Crito states that people will think ill of
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He feels that an unjust action against the State, would do more harm to himself and the State, than any good that could come of it. Leaving and breaking the law, would in fact make him guilty of the charges set against him. He would then be a corruptor of youth, setting out to bring down the State that he loves so dearly. Referring back to the concept of rational reflection, Socrates feels that is bound by his agreements, whether the outcome will cause his own death.

Socrates also contends that he is acting justly when it comes to his children, because he is setting an example of how to live to them. If he left, and ran away, his children would have to live their lives knowing they came from a man who broke laws, and acted unjust. Even in his own situation, the taint of acting unjust, would follow him and his family wherever they went. Socrates also expresses that if he acts unjust in these times, he will have to answer for his actions when faced with the Gods of the
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