Friday, July 22, 2011

Irony isn't lying if you are Socrates

"Socrates' style of conversation involved his own denial of knowledge. In these conversations, Socrates became the student and made those he questioned the teacher. Since Socrates appeared to be much more knowledgeable about the ambiguities and pitfalls of the subjects under discussion, his claim to ignorance became known as Socratic Irony."

Maybe it was Socratic Irony in Athens, but in New Mexico, we call it "lying" and you could get your face bashed for putting people on like that who are just trying to talk with you and be nice.

Anyway, so if I tell a lie in a post, you can just assume I am not really that dumb and am only being sophisticated like the ancient Greeks. Relax Max Irony we'll call it.

Do you remember that movie where Keanu Reeves and that other guy went back in time and met Socrates? They were all stupid and goofy like Dumb and Dumber or Beavis and Butthead (it was really my kind of movie.) This was before Keanu got all grown up and became a real actor. Anyway, they called Socrates "So-crates." Like a crate of peaches or something. I guess you don't remember.

Served him right though. Only he couldn't do any of his Socratic Irony with them because they really were stupid. Like dull horses, to paraphrase Plato. Never mind.


  1. Years ago, when I was a student, one of my friends failed her philosophy course resoundingly. I thought she was pretty bright so that put me off for years.

    Then more recently I came across a book, Sophie's World, "a novel about the history of philosophy" written for young people. I wished I hadn't started. My problem, maybe, was that I couldn't get past the idea that a strange man in his 50s or so was writing letters to, and meeting, a 15 year old girl. And nobody appeared to think it was odd.

    So then I gave up on philosophy for good.

  2. You went out with a man in his 50s when you were only 15? Just because he wrote a book?

  3. So you are saying Socrates was a prevert? I think you are getting him mixed up with that French politician and the fake hotel maid guy.

  4. I'm pretty sure "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure" stuck pretty close to the historical truth, A. Ours is not to disparage the ancient Greek perverts.

  5. Actually, his "discourses" (wink wink nudge nudge) withe the boy slave Menos were a heck of a lot more pukifying if you ask me.

  6. Or however you spell the kid's name. Minus, I'd say.

  7. The French maid was a guy?


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