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I. Rhetoric, Division and Collection (262 – 268)

1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 SOCRATES: Come, then – read me the beginning of Lysias’ speech.

2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 PHAEDRUS: “You understand my situation: I’ve told you how good it would be for us, in my opinion, if we could work this out. In any case, I don’t think I should lose the chance to get what I am asking for, merely because I don’t happen to be in love with you. A man in love will wish he had not done you any favors – ”

3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0 SOCRATES: Stop. Our task is to say how he fails and writes artlessly. Right?

4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0 PHAEDRUS: That is impossible.

5 Leave a comment on paragraph 5 0 PHAEDRUS: Yes. (263)

6 Leave a comment on paragraph 6 0 SOCRATES: Now isn’t this much absolutely dear: We are in accord with one another about some of the things we discourse about and in discord about others?

7 Leave a comment on paragraph 7 0 PHAEDRUS: I think I understand what you are saying; but, please, can you make it a little clearer?

8 Leave a comment on paragraph 8 0 SOCRATES: When someone utters the word “iron” or “silver,” don’t we all think of the same thing?

9 Leave a comment on paragraph 9 0 PHAEDRUS: Certainly.

10 Leave a comment on paragraph 10 0 SOCRATES: But what happens when we say “just” or “good”? Doesn’t each one of us go in a different direction? Don’t we differ with one another and even with ourselves?

11 Leave a comment on paragraph 11 0 PHAEDRUS: We certainly do.

12 Leave a comment on paragraph 12 0 SOCRATES: Therefore, we agree about the former and disagree about the latter.

13 Leave a comment on paragraph 13 0 PHAEDRUS: Right.

14 Leave a comment on paragraph 14 0 SOCRATES: Now in which of these two cases are we more easily deceived? And when does rhetoric have greater power?

15 Leave a comment on paragraph 15 0 PHAEDRUS: Clearly, when we wander in different directions.

16 Leave a comment on paragraph 16 0 SOCRATES: It follows that whoever wants to acquire the art of rhetoric must first make a systematic division and grasp the particular character of each of these two kinds of thing, both the kind where most people wander in different directions and the kind where they do not.

17 Leave a comment on paragraph 17 0 PHAEDRUS: What a splendid thing, Socrates, he will have understood if he grasps that!

18 Leave a comment on paragraph 18 0 SOCRATES: Second, I think, he must not be mistaken about his subject; he must have a sharp eye for the class to which whatever he is about to discuss belongs.

19 Leave a comment on paragraph 19 0 PHAEDRUS: Of course.

20 Leave a comment on paragraph 20 0 SOCRATES: Well, now, what shall we say about love? Does it belong to the class where people differ or to that where they don’t?

21 Leave a comment on paragraph 21 0 PHAEDRUS: Oh, surely the class where they differ. Otherwise, do you think you could have spoken of it as you did a few minutes ago, first saying that it is harmful both to lover and beloved and then immediately afterward that it is the greatest good?

22 Leave a comment on paragraph 22 0 SOCRATES: Very well put. But now tell me this – I can’t remember at all because I was completely possessed by the gods: Did I define love at the beginning of my speech?

23 Leave a comment on paragraph 23 0 PHAEDRUS: Oh, absolutely, by Zeus, you most certainly did.

24 Leave a comment on paragraph 24 0 SOCRATES: Alas, how much more artful with speeches the Nymphs, daughters of Achelous, and Pan, son of Hermes, are, according to what you say, than Lysias, son of Cephalus! Or am I wrong? Did Lysias too, at the start of his love-speech, compel us to assume that love is the single thing that he himself wanted it to be? Did he then complete his speech by arranging everything in relation to that? Will you read its opening once again?

25 Leave a comment on paragraph 25 0 PHAEDRUS: If you like. But what you are looking for is not there.

26 Leave a comment on paragraph 26 0 SOCRATES: Read it, so that I can hear it in his own words.

27 Leave a comment on paragraph 27 0 PHAEDRUS: “You understand my situation: I’ve told you how good it would be for us, in my opinion, if we could work this out. In any case, I don’t think I should lose the chance to get what I am asking for, merely (264) because I don’t happen to be in love with you. A man in love will wish he had not done you any favors, once his desire dies down-”

28 Leave a comment on paragraph 28 0 SOCRATES: He certainly seems a long way from doing what we wanted. He doesn’t even start from the beginning but from the end, making his speech swim upstream on its back. His first words are what a lover would say to his boy as he was concluding his speech. Am I wrong, Phaedrus, dear heart?

29 Leave a comment on paragraph 29 0 PHAEDRUS: Well, Socrates, that was the end for which he gave the speech!

30 Leave a comment on paragraph 30 0 SOCRATES: And what about the rest? Don’t the parts of the speech appear to have been thrown together at random? Is it evident that the second point had to be made second for some compelling reason? Is that so for any of the parts? I at least of course I know nothing about such matters ­ thought the author said just whatever came to mind next, though not without a certain noble willfulness. But you, do you know any principle of speech-composition compelling him to place these things one after another in this order?

31 Leave a comment on paragraph 31 0 PHAEDRUS: It’s very generous of you to think that I can understand his reasons so clearly.

32 Leave a comment on paragraph 32 0 SOCRATES: But surely you will admit at least this much: Every speech must be put together like a living creature, with a body of its own; it must be neither without head nor without legs; and it must have a middle and extremities that are fitting both to one another and to the whole work.

33 Leave a comment on paragraph 33 0 PHAEDRUS: How could it be otherwise?

34 Leave a comment on paragraph 34 0 SOCRATES: But look at your friend’s speech: Is it like that or is it otherwise? Actually, you’ll find that it’s just like the epigram people say is inscribed on the tomb of Midas the Phrygian.

35 Leave a comment on paragraph 35 0 PHAEDRUS: What epigram is that? And what’s the matter with it?

36 Leave a comment on paragraph 36 0 SOCRATES: It goes like this:

37 Leave a comment on paragraph 37 0  A maid of bronze am I, on Midas’ tomb I lie
     As long as water flows, and trees grow tall
     Shielding the grave where many come to cry
     That Midas rests here I say to one and all.

38 Leave a comment on paragraph 38 0 I’m sure you notice that it makes no difference at all which of its verses e comes first, and which last.

39 Leave a comment on paragraph 39 0 PHAEDRUS: You are making fun of our speech, Socrates.

40 Leave a comment on paragraph 40 0 SOCRATES: Well, then, if that upsets you, let’s leave that speech aside ­ even though I think it has plenty of very useful examples, provided one tries to emulate them as little as possible – and turn to the others. I think it is important for students of speechmaking to pay attention to one of their features.

41 Leave a comment on paragraph 41 0 PHAEDRUS: What do you mean? (265)

42 Leave a comment on paragraph 42 0 SOCRATES: They were in a way opposite to one another. One claimed that one should give one’s favors to the lover; the other, to the non-lover.

43 Leave a comment on paragraph 43 0 PHAEDRUS: Most manfully, too.

44 Leave a comment on paragraph 44 0 SOCRATES: I thought you were going to say “madly,” which would have been the truth, and is also just what I was looking for: We did say, didn’t we, that love is a kind of madness?

45 Leave a comment on paragraph 45 0 PHAEDRUS: Yes.

46 Leave a comment on paragraph 46 0 SOCRATES: And that there are two kinds of madness, one produced by human illness, the other by a divinely inspired release from normally accepted behavior?

47 Leave a comment on paragraph 47 0 PHAEDRUS: Certainly.

48 Leave a comment on paragraph 48 0 SOCRATES: We also distinguished four parts within the divine kind and connected them to four gods. Having attributed the inspiration of the prophet to Apollo, of the mystic to Dionysus, of the poet to the Muses, and the fourth part of madness to Aphrodite and to Love, we said that the madness of love is the best. We used a certain sort of image to describe love’s passion; perhaps it had a measure of truth in it, though it may also have led us astray. And having whipped up a not altogether implausible speech, we sang playfully, but also appropriately and respectfully, a story ­like hymn to my master and yours, Phaedrus – to Love, who watches over beautiful boys.

49 Leave a comment on paragraph 49 0 PHAEDRUS: And I listened to it with the greatest pleasure.

50 Leave a comment on paragraph 50 0 SOCRATES: Let’s take up this point about it right away: How was the speech able to proceed from censure to praise?

51 Leave a comment on paragraph 51 0 PHAEDRUS: What exactly do you mean by that?

52 Leave a comment on paragraph 52 0 SOCRATES: Well, everything else in it really does appear to me to have been spoken in play. But part of it was given with Fortune’s guidance, and there were in it two kinds of things the nature of which it would be quite wonderful to grasp by means of a systematic art.

53 Leave a comment on paragraph 53 0 PHAEDRUS: Which things?

54 Leave a comment on paragraph 54 0 SOCRATES: The first consists in seeing together things that are scattered about everywhere and collecting them into one kind, so that by defining each thing we can make clear the subject of any instruction we wish to give. Just so with our discussion of love: Whether its definition was or was not correct, at least it allowed the speech to proceed clearly and consistently with itself.

55 Leave a comment on paragraph 55 0 PHAEDRUS: And what is the other thing you are talking about, Socrates?

56 Leave a comment on paragraph 56 0 SOCRATES: This, in turn, is to be able to cut up each kind according to its species along its natural joints, and to try not to splinter any part, as a bad butcher might do. In just this way, our two speeches placed all (266) mental derangements into one common kind. Then, just as each single body has parts that natural y come in pairs of the same name (one of them being called the right-hand and the other the left-hand one), so the speeches, having considered unsoundness of mind to be by nature one single kind within us, proceeded to cut it up – the first speech cut its left-hand part, and continued to cut until it discovered among these parts a sort of love that can be called “left-handed,” which it correctly denounced; the second speech, in turn, led us to the right-hand part of madness; discovered a love that shares its name with the other but is actually divine; set it out before us, and praised it as the cause of our greatest goods.

57 Leave a comment on paragraph 57 0 PHAEDRUS: You are absolutely right.

58 Leave a comment on paragraph 58 0 SOCRATES: Well, Phaedrus, I am myself a lover of these divisions and collections, so that I may be able to think and to speak; and if I believe that someone else is capable of discerning a single thing that is also by nature capable of encompassing many, (46) I follow “straight behind, in his tracks, as if he were a god.” God knows whether this is the right name
for those who can do this correctly or not, but so far I have always called them “dialecticians.” But tell me what I must call them now that we have learned all this from Lysias and you. Or is it just that art of speaking that Thrasymachus and the rest of them use, which has made them masters of speech-making and capable of producing others like them – anyhow those who are willing to bring them gifts and to treat them as if they were kings?

59 Leave a comment on paragraph 59 0 PHAEDRUS: They may behave like kings, but they certainly lack the knowledge you’re talking about. No, it seems to me that you are right in calling the sort of thing you mentioned dialectic; but, it seems to me, rhetoric still eludes us.

60 Leave a comment on paragraph 60 0 SOCRATES: What are you saying? Could there be anything valuable which is independent of the methods I mentioned and is still grasped by art? If there is, you and I must certainly honor it, and we must say what part of rhetoric it is that has been left out.

61 Leave a comment on paragraph 61 0 PHAEDRUS: Well, there’s quite a lot, Socrates: everything, at any rate, written up in the books on the art of speaking.

62 Leave a comment on paragraph 62 0 SOCRATES: You were quite right to remind me. First, I believe, there is the Preamble with which a speech must begin. This is what you mean, isn’t it – the fine points of the art?

63 Leave a comment on paragraph 63 0 PHAEDRUS: Yes.

64 Leave a comment on paragraph 64 0 SOCRATES: Second come the Statement of Facts and the Evidence of Witnesses concerning it; third, Indirect Evidence; fourth, Claims to Plausibility. And I believe at least that excellent Byzantine word-wizard adds Confirmation and Supplementary Confirmation.

65 Leave a comment on paragraph 65 0 PHAEDRUS: You mean the worthy Theodorus? (267)

66 Leave a comment on paragraph 66 1 SOCRATES: Quite. And he also adds Refutation and Supplementary Refutation, to be used both in prosecution and in defense. Nor must we forget
the most excellent Evenus of Paros* who was the first to discover Covert Implication and Indirect Praise and who – some say – has even arranged Indirect Censures in verse as an aid to memory: a wise man indeed! And Tisias and Gorgias?* How can we leave them out when it is they who realized that what is likely must be held in higher honor than what is true; they who, by the power of their language, make small things appear great
and great things small; they who express modern ideas in ancient garb, and ancient – ones in modern dress; they who have discovered how to argue both concisely and at infinite length about any subject? Actually, when ] told Prodicus, 1 this last, he laughed and said that only he had discovered the art of proper speeches: What we need are speeches that are neither long nor short but of the right length.

67 Leave a comment on paragraph 67 1 PHAEDRUS: Brilliantly done, Prodicus!*

68 Leave a comment on paragraph 68 1 SOCRATES: And what about Hippias?* How can we omit him? I am sure our friend from Elis would cast his vote with Prodicus.

69 Leave a comment on paragraph 69 0 PHAEDRUS: Certainly.

70 Leave a comment on paragraph 70 1 SOCRATES: And what shall we say of the whole gallery of terms Polus set up-speaking with Reduplication, Speaking in Maxims, Speaking in Images-and of the terms Licymnius gave him as a present to help him explain Good Diction?*

71 Leave a comment on paragraph 71 1 PHAEDRUS: But didn’t Protagoras actually use similar terms?

72 Leave a comment on paragraph 72 1 SOCRATES: Yes, Correct Diction, my boy, and other wonderful things. As to the art of making speeches bewailing the evils of poverty and old age, the prize, in my judgment, goes to the mighty Chalcedonian.* He it is also who knows best how to inflame a crowd and, once they are inflamed, how to hush them again with his words’ magic spell, as he says himself. And let’s not forget that he is as good at producing slander as he is at refuting it, whatever its source may be. As to the way of ending a speech, everyone seems to be in agreement, though some call it Recapitulation and others by some other name.

73 Leave a comment on paragraph 73 0 PHAEDRUS: You mean, summarizing everything at the end and reminding the audience of what they’ve heard?

74 Leave a comment on paragraph 74 0 SOCRATES: That’s what I mean. And if you have anything else to add about the art of speaking –

75 Leave a comment on paragraph 75 0 PHAEDRUS: Only minor points, not worth making. (268)

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Source: http://phaedrus.whyandwhat.net/9-the-art-of-speaking-263-268/