Time Period: 469BC -- 399BC
Quote: "Wisdom begins in wonder."
Brief Description: Socrates was a Greek philosopher who was born in Athens and is said to have been the first philosopher . He is also the teacher of the popular philosopher Plato. The driving force behind Socrates was not his answers or advice, but rather the questions that he asked. Ironically, it was also his questions that led to his demise. His style of questioning is now called the "Socratic method" which is based on posing a question to someone, recognizing their ignorance, and then asking several more questions which would prove them to be "unwise". Though modern philosophy respects the questions he asked, many of his contemporaries did not and were so angry about being made to look foolish in public that they gathered together and worked to have him executed on an obscure criminal charge. Socrates also never claimed to know the answers to these questions himself. He also had never written any of his ideas of questions down, the only written record of any Socratic teaching were what Plato wrote.
Current Relevance: The Socratic method is still very much a part of philosophy and life in the modern world. For example, law students are taught this technique as it has proven very effective at humiliating and discrediting an "opponent".
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