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  • Print publication year: 2000
  • Online publication date: March 2008

10 - Approaching the Republic

from THE BEGINNINGS
Summary
Republic's view of justice and injustice emerges from Book IX's treatment of the tyrannical soul in an altogether more convincing light. The whole Anytus section has been designed to explore the general political implications of the question Socrates and Meno have been debating of whether virtue can be taught, and specifically to argue that if there are any teachers of virtue, they are not to be found among the leading statesmen of the Athenian democracy in its great period: Themistocles, Aristides, Pericles, Thucydides son of Melesias. The dialogue closest to Gorgias in its preoccupation with democratic rhetoric is Menexenus. The challenge Glaucon and Adeimantus throw down is developed over ten pages of taut, sophisticated, lucidly organized and deadly serious philosophical argumentation. The introduction of the idea of philosopher rulers is the greatest of all the revolutionary moments Plato has prepared for readers of Republic.
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The Cambridge History of Greek and Roman Political Thought
  • Online ISBN: 9781139053716
  • Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CHOL9780521481366
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