Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, Meno and Phaedo

Civil Disobedience in the Mind of Socrates College

Civil Disobedience in the Mind of Socrates


Civil disobedience is a practice that has been studied and exhibited for thousands of years. This practice is defined as “the refusal to obey certain laws or governmental demands for the purpose of influencing legislation or government policy” (1). It is a form of peaceful protest based on the idea that if a movement occurs solely on the refusal to obey the law, the government will weaken and therefore have to listen to the people and change the law accordingly. This idea can be seen across many works of literature, and perhaps one of the most famous instances where this idea is contemplated is in Plato’s The Apology and Crito. Throughout these works, it is evident that Socrates does not believe civil disobedience is permissible under any circumstances, which can be seen through his defense to the jury in The Apology and his actions carried out in Crito.


Civil disobedience is a widely controversial idea that is discussed in many works of literature. For centuries, many people used this powerful tool in order to create immense change to the government that controls them. Used correctly, disobeying the law can be an eye-opener for any government, and in order to restore structure in...

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