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Paris: Beauchesne Google Scholar. Dodds, E. A Revised Text with Introduction and Commentary. Methods of Interpreting Plato and His Dialogues. The Dialogues: First Period Eng. Hartmann Leipzig Google Scholar. Moes, M. Antike Medizi: die naturphilosophischen Grundlagen der Medizin in der griechischen Antike.

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Form and Good in Plato's Eleatic Dialogues

Cite article How to cite? He left us with dialogues. In these dialogues he is intentionally absent. In these dialogues, other men speak.

In This Article

But even these men do not just come out expressing a coherent philosophical system. These men, in a labyrinth of conversational threads, explore philosophical themes, and quite often leave the discussion only half completed.

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Again, all this is quite intentional on Plato's part. It seems, that by writing dialogues and not textbooks, Plato was hinting that philosophy is not the system of doctrines one professes. Rather, for Plato, a large part of philosophy, if not the most important part, is travelling the path of inquiry in our desire to understand, in our need to awaken ourselves, our souls as Plato would say, from our half-awake existence and thoughtless acceptance of inherited beliefs.

The Examined Life

The term Platonism is used a number of ways. It may refer to the philosophy of Plato. It may refer to the philosophy of those who consider themselves Plato's followers.

Self Directed Study in Philosophy - Plato's Dialogues - Sadler's Advice

It may refer to a number of themes which people associate with Plato, regardless of whether the attribution is correct or not. Platonism has evolved as a term and as a philosophical discipline. The earliest followers of Plato known as the Academics, after the name of the location Plato founded his school, the Park of Akadeimos, outside Athens.

Interpreting Plato

Since that time, Platonism became associated with a set of doctrines based upon significant passages of Plato's dialogues, with insights about his philosophy gained from his students. Scholars throughout the ages have wrestled with these dialogues, trying to figure out what Plato is attempting to tell us. How are we to interpret his writings? Who in the dialogues represents Plato's position?

Does anyone represent Plato? Another issue that confronts scholars is that some of the dialogues seems to state contradictory positions. This book is the culmination of two decades of research on the intractable problem of how to approach the writings of Plato the [Platonic Question] , based on my earlier publications on this topic [Interpreting Plato's Dialogues,] The Classical Quarterly , 47 , pp.

I am grateful to Oxford University Press for the use of a revised form of [Interpreting Plato's Dialogues] as the bases of Chapters 2 and 3 of this book.

The main point of Interpreting Plato's Dialogues is to introduce readers to the preliminary problems encountered in studying Plato's writings, and to explore in depth and critically the various ways of approaching the Platonic corpus. In this way, this book is a prolegomenon to the study of Plato's writings. Although it is addressed to experts in the fields of ancient Greek philosophy and classics, it is simultaneously written such that those who do not know the Greek language can easily follow the line of argument throughout.

Furthermore, no part of my main argument is contingent for its plausibility on disputes that may arise among scholars concerning the translation of some particular passage from Plato's corpus of writings.

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  8. In this way, then, the line of argument set forth in this book is translationally neutral.