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In The Republic Plato concludes that it is best for human beings that they be governed by a “divine and wise ruler” (the rational part of the soul). (Book Nine, p. 295, 590d)
First, explain, in your own words, using the text where appropriate, why Plato believes that human life is best when it is rationally governed.
Second, explore the consequences of Plato’s claim with reference to the following question: In what way(s) do Descartes and Camus agree with Plato that it is best for reason to rule?
Third, evaluate the consequences for the value of human life of the philosophical principle that the only legitimate authority is that which reason knows for certain, with reference to the following question: Is Camus correct to believe that this principle leads to the conclusion that life has no overarching meaning?
There are three parts to the essay represented by the three questions, but your answer should form a unified whole, organized by a thesis stated in the introductory paragraph. The paper should be no longer than 1500 words.
The three books the answers should come from are Plato’s republic, Descartes Meditations, and Camus Myth of the Sisyphus.
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