49 pages 1 hour read



Nonfiction | Book | Adult | Published in 380

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Sections 180c-185cChapter Summaries & Analyses

Sections 180c-185c Summary: “Pausanias’s Speech”

Aristodemus cannot remember the speeches following Phaedrus’s, so Apollodorus continues by reporting Pausanias’s.

Pausanias notes a problem with speaking “in unqualified praise of Love,” which is that Love is not “uniform” (13). As such, it is necessary to begin by clarifying “which love deserves our praise” (13). Love cannot be separated from Aphrodite, and since Aphrodite is dual, Love must be as well. Celestial Aphrodite “is older and has no mother,” while Common Aphrodite is the daughter of Zeus and Dione (13). Thus, the terms “celestial” and “common” must be applied to Love as well.

While every god deserves praise, it is important to distinguish the domains of the gods’ celestial versus common manifestations. No action is right or wrong in itself; it is right if done properly and wrong if not. So it is with loving. Love that is done properly “is good [and] deserves our praise” (14). Common Aphrodite incites Common Love: love for women as well as boys, bodies rather than minds. Common Love is concerned with satisfying desires rather than ensuring that “desires are properly satisfied” (14). It is not concerned with good or bad behavior. Celestial Aphrodite, on the other hand, inspires “affection for what is inherently strong and more intelligent,” which means “towards the male” (14).