Leading Blog






02.23.11

Socrates on Communication

Bettany Hughes, author of The Hemlock Cup—a fascinating portrait of Socrates and Athenian society—says that “He reminds us to keep debating the meaning of life, to keep questioning, to keep speaking to one another, to keep looking for answers. However you value him, you cannot argue with the central tenet of his philosophy. Because he beseeches mankind not to be thought-less.”

Athenian Agora
A proponent of open dialogue, Socrates would undoubtedly encourage face-to-face communication as the best way to build community, consensus, and trust. While technology has increased the speed and frequency of our communication, it is no substitute for face-to-face communication to convey meaning. In this passage, Hughes shares Socrates' concern over the potential for miscommunication without the give-and-take of face-to-face contact:
Socrates was wary of the written word. His anxiety was that it could neither account for itself nor answer back. Words were everywhere in Athena’s city, but Socrates, unusually, did not set his own down on papyrus with an inky flourish. In a city filled with authors of every kind, he was anxious about the impact of writing without the accountability of face-to-face contact. “I cannot help feeling, Phaedrus, that writing is unfortunately like painting; for the creations of the painter have the attitude of life, and yet if you ask them a question they preserve a solemn silence.”
Socrates was living through his own information revolution. He shares with us the same concerns.

Posted by Michael McKinney at 11:12 PM
| Comments (0) | This post is about Communication



BUILD YOUR KNOWLEDGE


ADVERTISE WITH US



SAP Concur

Entrepreneurs

Leadership Books
How to Do Your Start-Up Right
STRAIGHT TALK FOR START-UPS



Explore More

Leadership Books
Grow Your Leadership Skills
NEW AND UPCOMING LEADERSHIP BOOKS

Leadership Minute
Leadership Minute
BITE-SIZE CONCEPTS YOU CAN CHEW ON

Leadership Classics
Classic Leadership Books
BOOKS TO READ BEFORE YOU LEAD


Email
Get the LEAD:OLOGY Newsletter delivered to your inbox.    
Follow us on: Twitter Facebook LinkedIn Instagram

© 2021 LeadershipNow™

All materials contained in https://www.LeadershipNow.com are protected by copyright and trademark laws and may not be used for any purpose whatsoever other than private, non-commercial viewing purposes. Derivative works and other unauthorized copying or use of stills, video footage, text or graphics is expressly prohibited. The Amazon links on this page are affiliate links. If you click through and purchase, we will receive a small commission on the sale. This link is provided for your convenience and importantly, help to support our work here. We appreciate your use of these links.