- Title Pages
- Other volumes of collected essays by Donald Davidson
- Provenance of the Essays and Acknowledgments
- 1 Truth Rehabilitated
- 2 The Folly of Trying to Define Truth
- 3 Method and Metaphysics
- 4 Meaning, Truth, and Evidence
- 5 Pursuit of the Concept of Truth
- 6 What is Quine's View of Truth?
- 7 A Nice Derangement of Epitaphs
- 8 The Social Aspect of Language
- 9 Seeing Through Language
- 10 James Joyce and Humpty Dumpty
- 11 The Third Man
- 12 Locating Literary Language
- 13 Thinking Causes
- 14 Laws and Cause
- 15 Plato's Philosopher
- 16 The Socratic Concept of Truth
- 17 Dialectic and Dialogue
- 18 Gadamer and Plato's Philebus
- 19 Aristotle's Action
- 20 Spinoza's Causal Theory of the Affects
- Appendix: Replies to Rorty, Stroud, McDowell, and Pereda
- Contents List of Volumes of Essays
- Bibliography References
- (p.223) 15 Plato's Philosopher
- Truth, Language, and History
- Oxford University Press
This essay discusses Plato’s embrace of the Socratic elenchus, the inconclusive dialectic of conversational give and take wherein Socrates elicits a statement from his interlocutor, then sets out to show the statement’s inconsistency with other things the interlocutor believes. Someone who practices the elenchus can claim that he does not know what is true; it is enough that he has a method that leads to truth. It is only in the context of frank discussion, communication, and mutual exchange that trustworthy truths emerge.
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