Socrates’ religious Ethics.

Author/s Franco Trabattoni
Publishing Year 2022 Issue 2022/3
Language Italian Pages 13 P. 384-396 File size 211 KB
DOI 10.3280/SF2022-003003
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Martinetti approached Plato, curiously enough, almost only at the end and beginning of his career, mainly as a witness to Socrates, whom Martinetti felt to be particularly close to his own sensibility. There are two main elements that explain this closeness. Firstly, Socrates’ linking of philosophy and life, which Martinetti clearly perceived especially when he preferred to give up his professorship rather than join Fascism. Secondly, for Martinetti Socrates - not only the one of Plato but also of Xenophon - seems to be a key figure in reconciling the lofty demands of a wholly spiritual ethics of the Kantian type with those of establishing a nexus between virtue and happiness, which is instead a salient aspect of ancient ethics. Martinetti resolves the dilemma by attributing to Socrates a kind of philosophical religion grounded on inner intuition, capable of rising far above reason alone and its utilitarian calculations. Regardless of whether this position can be attributed to the historical Socrates, it nevertheless pinpoints a philosophical problem of the utmost importance. Even if the emphasis is placed, as the ancients mainly did, on the goal of happiness, it is still the case that it seems difficult to establish what human happiness is on the ground of rational calculation alone. Rather, it appears that the choice here is left to our preliminary intuitions about life and what makes it worth living.

Keywords: Martinetti, Plato, Socrates, Kant, ethics, happiness, religion.

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Franco Trabattoni, Martinetti: l’etica religiosa di Socrate in "RIVISTA DI STORIA DELLA FILOSOFIA" 3/2022, pp 384-396, DOI: 10.3280/SF2022-003003