Perception And Plato S Theaetetus Essay Research

Perception And Plato S Theaetetus Essay, Research Paper

Plato discusses theories of knowledge throughout his famous dialogue, the Theaetetus.

He discusses many different ways of learning and attempts to define knowledge. Plato

does this through a conversation between a few characters: Socrates, the famous

philosopher; Theodorus, an aged friend and philosopher of Socrates; and Theaetetus, a

young man who is introduced to Socrates before a discussion. One aspect of knowledge

which they review is perception. It is defined and explained by Socrates, to the young and

innocent Theaetetus.

Perception is defined by Floyd H. Allport in his book, Theories of Perception and

the Concept of Structure, as the way things look to us, or the way they sound, feel, taste,

or smell. It is not the way things are exactly, but the way we see them; or because it

involves all of the five senses, the way we perceive them. Perception is not restricted to

sight only, the world has countless numbers of sounds, smells, and textures.

Perception is the way things look to us because even though something might

seem to be one way, it is another. For example, the Muller-Lyer illusion makes people see

two lines of different lengths, while the lines are the same size. This illustrates the fact

that just because you perceive something to be a certain way does not mean that it is true.

Truth and perception do not necessarily coincide. This is also true with belief. When

seeing something that is too far fetched to be real, then you find it hard to believe.

Perception is merely an experience [which] is just a stage along the causal process

leading to belief. Perception is not truth or belief, but it is an important (however, not

necessary) step to reaching them.

In Plato s Theaetetus, the three characters in the conversation have a discussion on

perception and how it relates to the world. Plato recounts Socrates telling the young

Theaetetus how, contrary to his belief, perception is not knowledge. Perception is too

varied, Socrates says. He gives the example of a breeze blowing; one man can be made

cold from the wind, while the man next to him might not be cold at all. The blowing wind

is the same temperature, but as defined above, perception is the way things look to us.

Everybody is different and so everybody will therefore experience the world in a different


This is what Socrates explains to Theaetetus, who sparked the topic of

conversation with his reply, knowledge is simply perception. He was incorrect in his

thinking because knowledge consists of justification, belief, and truth. Since two of these

aspects are unattainable with perception alone, then perception can, in no way, be

considered knowledge. Theaetetus quickly learns the error he has made and the dialogue

and the examination of knowledge continues.


Все материалы в разделе "Иностранный язык"

ДОБАВИТЬ КОММЕНТАРИЙ  [можно без регистрации]
перед публикацией все комментарии рассматриваются модератором сайта - спам опубликован не будет

Ваше имя:


Хотите опубликовать свою статью или создать цикл из статей и лекций?
Это очень просто – нужна только регистрация на сайте.

Copyright © 2015-2018. All rigths reserved.