BEAR Day 2013
The Republican in Plato's Republic: Condoleezza Rice as the Philosopher KingPlato's Republic is a fundamental piece of political philosophy which discusses an ideal city run by Philosopher Kings. Though an old treatise, The Republic still has value today for giving advice to potential leaders. Plato's framework needs modernizing, but the idea of a true Philosopher King in power today should appeal to most people. A selfless and wise leader who can remain calm but can protect his constituents. What would a philosophic president look like? Many politicians like to claim a link to some respected old writer, often choosing a founding father or John Locke. A link with Plato would not be in terms of policy decisions, but rather how the politician comes to make those decisions and how the politicians rises to power. Dr. Condoleezza Rice is the best example of a modern version of Plato's Philosopher King. The PhD itself points to philosophy, though her degree is in political science with a focus on military relations. She excelled in her liberal education and became top of her field in academia, indicating she had the proper nature to excel. Her early background featured rigorous academics, resembling the education of Plato's Philosopher Kings. Many of her career choices strongly parallel the career path and decisions Plato prescribes for his Philosopher Kings. These individual aspects combined indicate that Dr. Rice embodies the modern equivalent to the Platonic ideal of the Philosopher King.