Aims of education, no TOC by Alfred North Whitehead

By Alfred North Whitehead

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But even this characterization of friendship is insufficient. If the common goal is money, then competition will produce enmity rather than friendship, since money acquired by one person is necessarily money kept from the other. The shared goal of friends must be, as we have seen, wis­ dom and virtue, since this is a goal two people can compete for with­ out impeding, but on the contrary by assisting, each other. 17 II. Second Motif : Erôs Even those who fail to note the theme of competition in the pro­ logue cannot fail to note the second theme I wish to discuss.

In the sense of a power mediating between the human and divine? In this case it is Socrates, and not the boys’ paidagôgoi, who is the true pedagogue. What following the three motifs throughout the dialogue has shown us is not only that competition, erôs and mediation are essential to friendship, but also that Socratic dialogue, as the truest form of com­ petition, erôs, and mediation, is therefore also the truest form of friendship. While the friendship between Socrates and the boys, enacted throughout the dialogue and explicitly affirmed by Socrates at the dialogue’s conclusion, may not solve the problems that some readers bring to the dialogue, it does solve the problems dramatized in the prologue.

General Lessons for Reading the Prologues of other Dialogues This reading of the prologue of the Lysis can provide some general lessons for reading the prologues of other dialogues. It is important, first of all, to look for general themes introduced by the prologue: not only themes explicitly addressed in the discussion, but also themes suggested by the dramatic and literary details. Secondly, we must determine what problems the prologue introduces in connection with these themes. Thirdly, we need to read the main discussion from the perspective of these problems, in the anticipation that it will, if not solve, then at least illuminate them.

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