In the beginning of the dialogue between Socrates and Callicles, the idea of “self-disciplined” is introduced and we immediately realize there is a conflict between the two in the definition of it. Callicles and Socrates find themselves clashing yet again and disagreeing on what “self-discipline” truly inculdes. Socrates defines it as being “in control of oneself, and mastering the pleasures and desires which arise within oneself” (79). Yet, Callicles defines “self-disciplined” more literally and sees it as someone who governs themselves and acts outside of the ruling government.

In this instance, I find myself agreeing more with Socrates. Self-disciplined reflects an inner discipline which operates outside of the idea of actually government. The only relation the two have is in the word “disciplined”. Besides that, self-disciplined and the actual governemnt do not have a relationship in their meaning. In fact, I find Callicles definition of “self-disicplined” to be extremely literal and one dimensional and it makes me question the rest of his arguments within Gorgias.

I find the disagreement between Socrates and Callicles over this definition to be interesting because their two sides not only represent different definitions but different ways to interperet the world around them. Socrates represents a more intellectual approach to the world – which is why i find myself siding with him – while Callicles represents a very literal interpretation.

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