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What is the Second Sophistic?

The Second Sophistic was a Greek rhetorical movement dating back to the 1st century AD. It originated to fill the vacuum left by the decline of tragedy, comedy and political oratory. Compared to the First Rhetoric, it lacked the strictly philosophical component, and posed its emphasis on a demonstrative kind of rhetoric. The Sophists of the Second movement did not use their art to discover the truth through philosophical disquisition, rather they taught to master the art of words through the discussion of absurd theses. 
Their prose was extremely chiselled, fluid and Actic (ie. structured neatly and simply, with the use of concise words).
At the time, the word Sophist acquired an ambivalent meaning; the profession of the Sophist used to be a prestigious one. It was well-paid and therefore accessible mostly to the aristocracy. However, in addition to this, many did not consider moral that the Sohists taught how to bend the truth employing words; although their "playing the devil's advocate" was for purely didactical purposes, most believed that this practice, disconnected from philosophy and its quest for the truth, could only yield negative and immoral results.

Giulia F. A Level Classical Greek tutor, A Level Latin tutor, A Level...

1 year ago

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Annika M.

Degree: Classics 3 Year course (Bachelors) - Cambridge alumni University

Subjects offered: Classical Greek, Latin+ 2 more

Classical Greek
Latin
Classical Civilisation
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“About Me:I recently graduated from Cambridge University where I studied Classics at Fitzwilliam College. This year I am volunteering for the year teaching English and assisting in the running of cultural activities for children at th...”

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Kim N.

Degree: Classics (Bachelors) - Durham University

Subjects offered: Classical Greek, Maths+ 1 more

Classical Greek
Maths
Latin

“ABOUT ME: Hello! I'm Kim and am currently doing Classics at Durham. I was always interested in languages and the culture and history behind it, which means even now I'm trying to learn new languages and their culture! Ancient Greece a...”

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Maria P.

Degree: Classics (Masters) - Edinburgh University

Subjects offered: Classical Greek, Latin+ 5 more

Classical Greek
Latin
History
French
English Literature
English Language

“INTRODUCTION A self-motivated and conscientious multilingual Classics student at the University of Edinburgh, with a passion for the Arts and Humanities.  EXAMINATION BOARDS AND SUBJECTS TAUGHT I can assist pupils studying the follow...”

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Giulia F.

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Degree: International Relations with History of Art (Bachelors) - Exeter University

Subjects offered: Classical Greek, Philosophy+ 2 more

Classical Greek
Philosophy
Latin
Italian

“A bit about me...My name is Giulia and I am a third year International Relations with Art History student at the University of Exeter. My high school Diploma was Humanities-oriented, since I've always had a great fondness for subjects...”

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