Plato on the Soul

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Plato's central contribution to psychology is his theory of the tripartite soul. This is at once a theory about the nature of the embodied human soul and a theory of human motivation. This article emphasizes on the importance and immortality of the soul. Plato does say that perceptible particulars derive their names from the forms they partake of their souls. One of his arguments against the harmonia theory of the soul, put forward by Simmias, relies on the occurrence of conflicts between desires and also of conflicts between how one decides to act and how anger or fear incline one to act. Among other things, he points out that people who are thirsty may nonetheless be averse to drinking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Plato
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199892044
ISBN (Print)9780195182903
StatePublished - Sep 2 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Arts and Humanities


  • Conflict
  • Desires
  • Harmonia
  • Immortality
  • Perceptible particulars
  • Psychology
  • Soul
  • Tripartite soul


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