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Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie

Ed. by Horn, Christoph / Serck-Hanssen, Camilla

Together with Mercer, Christia

4 Issues per year

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Identification and Definition in the Lysis

Gale Justin1

1.

Citation Information: Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie. Volume 87, Issue 1, Pages 75–104, ISSN (Online) 1613-0650, ISSN (Print) 0003-9101, DOI: 10.1515/agph.2005.87.1.75, July 2005

Publication History:
Published Online:
2005-07-27

Abstract

In this paper, I make a case for interpreting the Lysis as a dialogue of definition, designed to answer the question of “What is a friend?” The main innovation of my interpretation is the contention – and this is argued for in the paper – that Socrates hints towards a definition of being a friend that applies equally to mutual friendship and one-way attraction – the two kinds of friend relation very clearly identified by Socrates in the dialogue. The key to understanding how the two different kinds of friendship can have a common definition is to appreciate that the property of being a friend has a relational character.

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