In one volume, this book brings together a new English translation of Plato's Meno, a selection of illuminating articles on themes in the dialogue published between 1965 and 1985 and an introduction setting the Meno in its historical context and opening up the key philosophical issues which the various articles discuss. A glossary is provided which briefly introduces some of the key terms and indicates how they are translated. The Meno is an excellent introduction to Plato and philosophy.
Classical Philosophy is the first of a series of books in which Peter Adamson aims ultimately to present a complete history of philosophy, more thoroughly but also more enjoyably than ever before. In short, lively chapters, based on the popular History of Philosophy podcast, he offers an accessible, humorous, and detailed look at the emergence of philosophy with the Presocratics, the probing questions of Socrates, and the first full flowering of philosophy with the dialogues of Plato and the treatises of Aristotle. The story is told 'without any gaps', discussing not only such major figures but also less commonly discussed topics like the Hippocratic Corpus, the Platonic Academy, and the role of women in ancient philosophy. Within the thought of Plato and Aristotle, the reader will find in-depth introductions to major works, such as the Republic and the Nicomachean Ethics, which are treated in detail that is unusual in an introduction to ancient philosophy. Adamson looks at fascinating but less frequently read Platonic dialogues like the Charmides and Cratylus, and Aristotle's ideas in zoology and poetics. This full coverage allows him to tackle ancient discussions in all areas of philosophy, including epistemology, metaphysics, philosophy of language, philosophy of science, ethics and politics. Attention is also given to the historical and literary context of classical philosophy, with exploration of how early Greek cosmology responded to the poets Homer and Hesiod, how Socrates was presented by the comic playwright Aristophanes and the historian Xenophon, and how events in Greek history may have influenced Plato's thought. This is a new kind of history which will bring philosophy to life for all readers, including those coming to the subject for the first time.
Exploring the question of what exactly makes good people good, Protagoras and Meno are two of the most enjoyable and accessible of all of Plato's dialogues. Widely regarded as his finest dramatic work, the Protagoras, set during the golden age of Pericles, pits a youthful Socrates against the revered sophist Protagoras, whose brilliance and humanity make him one the most interesting and likeable of Socrates' philosophical opponents, and turns their encounter into a genuine and lively battle of minds. The Meno sees an older but ever ironic Socrates humbling a proud young aristocrat as they search for a clear understanding of what it is to be a good man, and setting out the startling idea that all human learning may be the recovery of knowledge already possessed by our immortal souls.
The Oxford Handbooks series is a major new initiative in academic publishing. Each volume offers an authoritative and state-of-the-art survey of current thinking and research in a particular area. Specially commissioned essays from leading international figures in the discipline give critical examinations of the progress and direction of debates. Oxford Handbooks provide scholars and graduate students with compelling new perspectives upon a wide range of subjects in the humanities and social sciences. Plato is the best known, and continues to be the most widely studied, of all the ancient Greek philosophers. The twenty-one newly commissioned articles in the Oxford Handbook of Plato provide in-depth and up-to-date discussions of a variety of topics and dialogues. The result is a useful state-of-the-art reference to the man many consider the most important philosophical thinker in history. Each article is an original contribution from a leading scholar, and they all serve several functions at once: they survey the lay of the land; express and develop the authors' own views; and situate those views within a range of alternatives. This Handbook contains chapters on metaphysics, epistemology, love, language, ethics, politics, art and education. Individual chapters are are devoted to each of the following dialogues: the Republic, Parmenides, Theaetetus, Sophist, Timaeus, and Philebus. There are also chapters on Plato and the dialogue form; on Plato in his time and place; on the history of the Platonic corpus; on Aristotle's criticism of Plato, and on Plato and Platonism.
The issues surrounding civil disobedience have been discussed since at least 399 BC and, in the wake of such recent events as the protest at Tiananmen Square, are still of great relevance. By presenting classic and current philosophical reflections on the issues, this book presents all the basic materials needed for a philosophical assessment of the nature and justification of civil disobedience. The pieces included range from classic essays by leading contemporary thinkers such as Rawls, Raz and Singer. Hugo Adam Bedau's introduction sets out the issues and shows how the various authors shed light on each aspect of them.
Meno Charmides Laches Lysis 'Do please try to tell us what courage is...' In these four dialogues Plato considers virtue and its definition. Charmides, Laches, and Lysis investigate the specific virtues of self-control, courage, and friendship; the later Meno discusses the concept of virtue as a whole, and whether it is something that can be taught. In the conversations between Socrates and his interlocutors, moral concepts are debated and shown to be more complex than at first appears, until all the participants in the conversations are reduced to bafflement. The artistry as well as the philosophy of these dialogues has always been widely admired. The introduction to this edition explains the course of the four dialogues and examines the importance of Socrates' questions and arguments, and the notes cover major and minor points in more detail. This is an essential volume for understanding the brilliance of the first Western philosopher. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
Plato c428 - c348BC Without the work of Plato, western thought is, quite literally, unthinkable. No single influence has been greater, in every age and in every philosophic field. Even those thinkers who have rejected Plato's views have found themselves working to an agenda he set. Yet between the neo-platonist interpretations and the anti-platonist reactions, the stuff of 'Platonism' proper has often been obscured. The philosopher himself has not necessarily helped in the matter: at times disconcertingly difficult, at other disarmingly simple, Plato can be an elusive thinker, his meanings hard to pin down. His dialogues complex and often ironically constructed and do not simply expand his views, which in any case changed and developed over a long life. In this lucid and exciting new introductory guide, Bernard Williams takes his reader back to first principles, re-reading the key texts to reveal what the philosopher actually said. The result is a rediscovered Plato: often unexpected, always fascinating and rewarding.
The Plato who emerges from these essays is the seminal thinker, the profound philosopher, the master of dialectic who offers, together with his insights into reality and human values, a systematically developed set of powerful devices for the articulation and defence of his ideas. In each case the discussion unfolds not as advocacy of Platonic doctrines but as critical assessment of argument, and is meant as judicious explication of the logical form of significant theses often believed, during centuries of Platonic commentary, to be cornerstones of a monumental speculative system. It demonstrates a shared and strikingly high regard for Plato as a major thinker in the western philosophical tradition, a recognition that the dialogues he wrote continue to exert influence as well as attract theoretical attention. Taken together with the material on Plato in Volume II, Volume III displays a definite continuity in direction, scope, and quality, strengthening the conviction that Platonic scholarship has entered a new and different phase and has consolidated the approach that this new movement introduced.
This book is an extensive, self-contained, up-to-date study of Lehrer's epistemological work. Covering all major aspects, it contains original contributions by some of the most distinguished specialists in the field, outgoing from the latest, significantly revised version of Lehrer's theory. All basic ideas are explained in an introductory chapter. Lehrer's extensive replies in a final chapter give unique access to his current epistemological thinking.
Three Traditions of Greek Political Thought: Plato in Dialogue is an analysis of the emergence of Western philosophical and political thought in archaic and classical Greece. With particular focus on Plato, this book is an in-depth study of the contentious dialogue in classical political philosophy. In the late archaic and classical periods, two major traditions of philosophical and political thought developed. One tradition was associated with the Presocratic mechanistic materialistic philosophers and the Sophists. The second tradition, beginning with Pythagoras, gained full expression in the collected dialogues of Plato. Both of these philosophic traditions challenged the long established Greek mythico/religious tradition associated with Homer, Hesiod, Aeschylus, Sophocles, and others. This study examines the dynamic dialogue involving these three traditions, which present competing and conflicting world views. It concludes that Plato's dialogues, taken together, quintessentially embody the mainstream dialogue or trialogue, as it could be called, in Greek political thought. This book also makes the case that the three major traditions of Greek political thought set the stage for the future dialogue of Western political philosophy even to this day.