For some reflections on the structure of the "Economy" chapter of Walden, look here: Download file
Here are some brief notes introducing next week's reading assignment: Download file. I will try to do more extensive notes, if I have time. Check the blog for updates.
In the second writing assignment, I would like you to comment on Plato's critique of democratic society and the democratic soul, and the particular sort of freedom that characterizes that society and that soul. Here is the assignment: Download file
The next reading assignment is the fourth book of Plato's Republic. Please read this very carefully. It contains the answer to the basic question about the value of justice in the soul. Here are my notes: Download file
For this next week, please read about Plato's efforts to create a culture in which a strong military could be maintained without corrupting and ultimately destroying the state. This reading is a lesson in what price one has to pay, if one opts for luxury as a component of civic life. These are the notes: Download file
Here are the reading notes for your second assignment, Book II of Plato's Repubic: Download file
In writing The Republic, Plato invents a form of moral thinking: using reflection on ideal structures to illuminate our ordinary moral landscape. His suggestion has been taken up by novelists at many different "distances" from ordinary life.
We all take our moral bearings partly from spaces and times that we judge to particularly good or right or satisfactory. In this first writing assignment, think about your ideal spaces, occasions, situations, and try to explain the moral commitments that they embody for you. The assignment sheet can be downloaded here: Download file
For those students (and interested outsiders) who need the basic, first night material for Intro to Ethics, here is the syllabus, including the first writing assignment: Download file. Since we are discussing Greek material, a Greek timeline was also provided: Download file.