e-book Of Art and Wisdom: Platos Understanding of Techne

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It is most useful when the knowledge is practically applied, rather than theoretically or aesthetically applied. For the ancient Greeks, when techne appears as art, it is most often viewed negatively, whereas when used as a craft it is viewed positively because a craft is the practical application of an art, rather than art as an end in itself. In The Republic , written by Plato , the knowledge of forms "is the indispensable basis for the philosophers' craft of ruling in the city" Stanford Techne is often used in philosophical discourse to distinguish from art or poiesis.

In his work The Invention of Art , Larry Shiner argues that techne cannot be simply translated to art nor either simply to craft. This being due to art and craft being socially constructed at a certain period in history. Techne is often used as a term to further define the process of rhetoric as an art of persuasion. John Poulakos explains how the Sophists believed rhetoric to be an art that aimed for terpis, or aesthetic pleasure, while maintaining a medium of logos.

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For centuries, debate between sophists and followers of Plato has ensued over whether rhetoric can be considered a form of art based on the different definitions of techne. Some examples of handbooks are the Rhetoric of Aristotle , the Rhetorica ad Alexandrum , and the De Inventione of Cicero , all composed of rules to write effective speeches.

In Gorgias , Plato wrote that rhetoric is not techne but a habit of a bold and ready wit. Plato continued saying rhetoric is not an art but an experience because it fails to explain the nature of its own application. He compared it to cookery and medicine saying cookery pretends to know what is best for the body because it is pleasurable while medicine knows what is for the best of the health of the human body. Medicine is techne for it seeks what is best for the health of a person unlike cookery which is only for pleasure and fools a person into believing it is better for their health.


  1. Of Art and Wisdom.
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  3. 4 Techne in Plato and the New Testament;
  4. Studies in Honour of Michel Desjardins.

Richard Parry [ citation needed ] writes that Aristotle believed techne aims for good and forms an end, which could be the activity itself or a product formed from the activity. Aristotle used health as an example of an end that is produced from the techne of medicine. To make a distinction between techne and arete , he said the value of techne is the end product while arete values choosing the action that promotes the best moral good.

Techne is also a part of communication, and affects how human cultures interact.

Plato And Aristotle 's View On Knowledge Essay

When people speak to one another, they apply their knowledge of social interactions, verbal and nonverbal cues, and their shared language to the skill of speaking. It is both personal and social, everybody has their own personal techne around their speech based on learned experiences and personal tics, and very social in that communities all communicate amongst each other on the interpersonal and large scale. This is an important, provocative book.

Subscribe to our mailing list and be notified about new titles, journals and catalogs. The Greek word "techne," typically translated as "art," but also as "craft," "skill," "expertise," "technical knowledge," and even "science," has been decisive in shaping our "technological" culture. Here David Roochnik comprehensively analyzes Plato's treatment of this crucial word. Roochnik maintains that Plato's understanding of both the goodness of techne, as well as its severe limitations and consequent need to be supplemented by "nontechnical" wisdom, can speak directly to our own concerns about the troubling impact technology has had on contemporary life.


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    WikiZero - Techne

    Vlastos G. Weber H. Wedgwood R. White N. Williams B. Platon: Politeia Berlin 55 - Wolf S. Author: Tamer Nawar 1.

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