There is now a renewed concern for moral psychology among moral philosophers. Moreover, contemporary philosophers interested in virtue, moral responsibility and moral progress regularly refer to Plato and Aristotle, the two founding fathers of ancient ethics. The book contains eleven chapters by distinguished scholars which showcase current research in Greek ethics. Four deal with Plato, focusing on the Protagoras, Euthydemus, Symposium and Republic, and discussing matters of literary presentation alongside the philosophical content. The four chapters on Aristotle address problems such (...) as the doctrine of the mean, the status of rules, equity and the tension between altruism and egoism in Aristotelian eudaimonism. A contrast to classical Greek ethics is presented by two chapters reconstructing Epicurus' views on the emotions and moral responsibility as well as on moral development. The final chapter on personal identity in Empedocles shows that the concern for moral progress is already palpable in Presocratic philosophy. (shrink)
This book aims to provide an introduction to Aristotle's Politics, highlighting the major themes and arguments offered in the scholar's work. It begins with a discussion on what Aristotle perceives as human good, which he had described as the ethical purpose of political science, and how he views the political community, or the polis, as a community of persons formed with a view to some good purpose and a supreme entity in the sense that it is not just one aspect (...) of city-state society but is the whole of that society. The book also discusses Aristotle's arguments against the abolition of the household for the ruling class and the communism of families and property, which Plato advocates, and highlights certain inconsistencies and vulnerabilities in his arguments supporting natural slavery and on how the husband should rule over his wife and children. The book presents Aristotle's account of the relative merits of six different types of constitution and his views on the best possible constitution that will help in the realization of the polis' true purpose of achieving the good life. It ends with a discussion on Aristotle's view of political science in relation to the protection of particular constitutions against constitutional change and political disorder. (shrink)
The material elements of writing have long been undervalued, and have been dismissed by recent historicising trends of criticism; but analysis of these elements - sound, signature, letters - can transform our understanding of literary texts. In this book Tom Cohen shows how, in an era of representational criticism and cultural studies, the role of close reading has been overlooked. Arguing that much recent criticism has been caught in potentially regressive models of representation, Professor Cohen undertakes to counter this by (...) rethinking the 'materiality' of the text itself. Through a series of revealing new readings of the work of writers including Plato, Bakhtin, Poe, Whitman and Conrad, Professor Cohen exposes the limitations of new historicism and neo-pragmatism, and demonstrates how 'the materiality of language' operates to undo the representational models of meaning imposed by the literary canon. (shrink)
This valuable work of reference provides a comprehensive bibliography on all scholarly work that was published on Plato and Socrates during the years 1958-73. It thus forms an important addition to Harold Cherniss’s bibliography, which covered the years 1950-7. The author has sought to include all materials primarily concerned with Socrates and Plato, together with other works which make a contribution to our understanding of the two philosophers. The bibliography is arranged by topic and there are cross-references at the end (...) of each section. The works in each category are arranged chronologically and then alphabetically (by author) within each year. An effort has been made to distinguish when a book has had more than one edition and when an article has been reprinted. Additionally the author has listed reviews of books and dissertations as these have come to his attention. (shrink)
This new edition is eminently suitable for readers new to Plato, offering a readable translation which is accessible without the aid of a commentary andassumes no prior knowledge of the ancient Greek world or language.
This is an English translation of four of Plato’s dialogue (Protagoras, Euthydemus, Hippias Major, and Cratylus) that explores the topic of sophistry and philosophy, a key concept at the source of Western thought. Includes notes and an introductory essay. Focus Philosophical Library translations are close to and are non-interpretative of the original text, with the notes and a glossary intending to provide the reader with some sense of the terms and the concepts as they were understood by Plato’s immediate audience.
Socrates is one of the most important yet enigmatic philosophers of all time; his fame has endured for centuries despite the fact that he never actually wrote anything. In 399 B.C.E., he was tried on the charge of impiety by the citizens of Athens, convicted by a jury, and sentenced to death (ordered to drink poison derived from hemlock). About these facts there is no disagreement. However, as the sources collected in this book and the scholarly essays that follow them (...) show, several of even the most basic facts about these events were controversial in antiquity, and the questions persist today: How and why was Socrates brought to trial? Why did the jurors, members of the world's first democracy, find him guilty? When he was given an opportunity to escape execution, why did he refuse to do so and instead accept the punishment that he and his friends agreed was unjustly assigned to him? How exactly did Socrates die? Differences of opinion on these and other issues continue to arouse our curiosity and to challenge new generations of students and scholars. The Trial and Execution of Socrates: Sources and Controversies is the first work to collect in one place all of the major ancient sources on Socrates' death--those of both his critics and his defenders--as well as recent scholarly views. Part I includes new translations of Plato's Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, and the death scene from Phaedo, as well as other ancient sources that shed light on Socrates' trial and execution. Part II features some of the most influential recent scholarship on this historically momentous event with work by M. F. Burnyeat, Robert Parker, Mark L. McPherran, Thomas C. Brickhouse and Nicholas D. Smith, Richard Kraut, Christopher Gill, and Enid Bloch (whose essay is published here for the first time). Ideal for undergraduate surveys of ancient Greek philosophy and upper-level courses on Socrates and Socratic philosophy, this unique collection provides an unprecedented look into the many perplexing questions surrounding the trial and execution of this remarkable man. (shrink)
Aristotle attaches particular significance to the homomyny of many of the central concepts in philosophy and science: that is, to the diversity of ways of being that are denoted by a single concept. Shields here investigates and evaluates Aristotle's approach to questions about homonymy, characterizing the metaphysical and semantic commitments necessary to establish the homonymy of a given concept. Then, in a series of case studies, he examines in detail some of Aristotle's principal applications of homonymy--to the body, sameness and (...) and oneness, life, goodness, and being. This first full-length study of a central aspect of Aristotle's thought will interest philosophers working in a number of areas. (shrink)
Discovered one hundred years ago, Aristotle's Athenaion Politeia is invaluable to contemporary understanding of Athenian democracy. As a historical record, however, it has been found to be so unreliable that some have questioned its true authorship, and it has remained largely ignored by those studying philosophy and literature. Keaney uses a literary approach to reassert Aristotle's authorship and to present the Athenaion Politeia as a document that defies the constraints of any particular genre--probably never intended to be a piece of (...) historical writing. He goes beyond the traditional approach of historical analysis to consider the work as characteristic of a new and innovative genre created by Aristotle, that of empirically-based cultural history. (shrink)
This offering in Routledge's acclaimed History of Philosophy series completes the acclaimed 10-volume collection. This work explores the schools of thought that developed in the wake of Platonism through the time of Augustine. The 11 separately authored in-depth articles include: Aristotle the scientist-- David Furley, Princeton University; Aristotle: logic and metaphysics-- Alan Code, Ohio State University; Aristotle: aesthetics and philosophy of mind -- David Gallop, Trent University, Ontario; Aristotle: ethics and politics-- Stephen White, University of Texas at Austin; The peripatetic (...) school-- Robert Sharples, University College, London; Hellenistic science and mathematics-- Alan C. Bowen, Institute for Research in Classical Philosophy and Science, New Jersey; Epicureanism-- Philip Mitsis, Cornell University; Stoicism-- Brad Inwood, University of Toronto; Ancient skepticism-- Michael Frede, Keble College, Oxford; Neo-Platonism-- Eyjdfur Kjalar Emilsson, University of Iceland; Augustine-- G.J.P. O'Daly, University College London. Order the entire Routledge History of Philosophy series and save 10% off each volume! (shrink)
Beginning with a long and extensively rewritten introduction surveying the predecessors of the Presocratics, this book traces the intellectual revolution initiated by Thales in the sixth century B.C. to its culmination in the metaphysics of Parmenides and the complex physical theories of Anaxagoras and the Atomists in the fifth century it is based on a selection of some six hundred texts, in Greek and a close English translation which in this edition is given more prominence. These provide the basis for (...) a detailed critical study of the principal individual thinkers of the time. Besides serving as an essential text for undergraduate and graduate courses in Greek philosophy and in the history of science, this book will appeal to a wide range of readers with interests in philosophy, theology, the history of ideas and of the ancient world, and indeed to anyone who wants an authoritative account of the Presocratics. (shrink)
This interpretive introduction provides unique insight into Plato's Republic. Stressing Plato's desire to stimulate philosophical thinking in his readers, Julia Annas here demonstrates the coherence of his main moral argument on the nature of justice, and expounds related concepts of education, human motivation, knowledge and understanding. In a clear systematic fashion, this book shows that modern moral philosophy still has much to learn from Plato's attempt to move the focus from questions of what acts the just person ought to perform (...) to the more profound questions of what sort of person the just person ought to be. (shrink)
In this study, George Rudebusch addresses whether Socrates was a hedonist--whether he believed pleasure to be the good. In attempting to locate Socrates' position on hedonism, Rudebusch examines the passages in Plato's early dialogues that are the most disputed on the topic. He maintains that Socrates identifies pleasant activity with virtuous activity, describing Socrates' hedonism as one of activity, not sensation. This analysis allows for Socrates to find both virtue and pleasure to be the good, thus solving the textual puzzle (...) and showing the power of Socratic argument in leading human beings toward the good. (shrink)
Knowing Persons is an original study of Plato's account of personhood. For Plato, embodied persons are images of a disembodied ideal. The ideal person is a knower. Hence, the lives of embodied persons need to be understood according to Plato's metaphysics of imagery. For Gerson, Plato's account of embodied personhood is not accurately conflated with Cartesian dualism. Plato's dualism is more appropriately seen in the contrast between the ideal disembodied person and the embodied one than in the contrast between mind (...) or soul and body. (shrink)
The Greek State.--The Greek woman.--On music and words.--Homer's contest.--The relation of Schopenhauer's philosophy to a German culture.--Philosophy during the tragic age of the Greeks.--On truth and falsity in their ultramoral sense.
The Politics is one of the most influential texts in the history of political thought, and it raises issues which still confront anyone who wants to think seriously about the ways in which human societies are organized and governed. By examining the way societies are run--from households to city states--Aristotle establishes how successful constitutions can best be initiated and upheld. For this edition, Sir Ernest Barker's fine translation, which has been widely used for nearly half a century, has been extensively (...) revised to meet the needs of the modern reader. The accessible introduction and clear notes examine the historical and philosophical background of the work and discuss its significance for modern political thought. (shrink)
Aristotle's teaching on the subject of happiness has been a topic of intense philosophical debate in recent years; it is of vital importance to the question of the relevance of his ethics in the present day. Aristotle's admirers struggle to read a comprehensive account of the supreme happiness into the Nicomachean Ethics; Kenny argues that those who are prepared to take the neglected Eudemian Ethics seriously preserve their admiration intact without doing violence to any of the relevant texts of the (...) Nicomachean Ethics. Kenny has refined his position on the relation between the two works, offering a fresh examination and interpretation of the Eudemian Ethics on the basis of the 1991 Oxford Classical Text. He combines scholarly discussion of the Greek texts with reflection of the topics covered by Aristotle, taking account of post-Aristotelian treatments of themes such as moral vocation and moral luck. (shrink)
This book is a study of ancient views about 'moral luck'. It examines the fundamental ethical problem that many of the valued constituents of a well-lived life are vulnerable to factors outside a person's control, and asks how this affects our appraisal of persons and their lives. The Greeks made a profound contribution to these questions, yet neither the problems nor the Greek views of them have received the attention they deserve. This book thus recovers a central dimension of Greek (...) thought and addresses major issues in contemporary ethical theory. One of its most original aspects is its interrelated treatment of both literary and philosophical texts. The Fragility of Goodness has proven to be important reading for philosophers and classicists, and its non-technical style makes it accessible to any educated person interested in the difficult problems it tackles. This new edition features an entirely new preface by Martha Nussbaum. (shrink)
The Theaetetus is one of the most widely studied of any of the Platonic dialogues because its dominant theme concerns the significant philosophical question, what is knowledge? In this new interpretation of the Theaetetus, Paul Stern provides the first full-length treatment of its political character in relationship to this dominant theme. Stern argues that this approach sheds significant light on the distinctiveness of the Socratic way of life, with respect to both its initial justification and its ultimate character.
A Guide to Plato's Republic provides an integral interpretation of the Republic that is accessible even to readers approaching Plato's masterwork for the first time. Written at a level understandable to undergraduates, it is ideal for students and other readers who have little or no background in philosophy or political theory. Rice anticipates their inevitable reactions to the Republic and treats them seriously, opening the way to an appreciation of the complexities of the text without oversimplifying it. While many books (...) on the Republic never stray far from explicating Plato's text, this work contrasts Plato's responses to perennial issues in philosophy and political theory with those of several key subsequent thinkers. It uses engaging examples to show the continuing relevance of Plato's arguments and introduces some basic vocabulary of philosophy and political theory, going beyond terse dictionary definitions by illustrating what technical terms mean in the context of Plato's work. The author's interpretative posture is appreciative but respectfully critical of Plato's vision. Stressing the relationship between Plato's politics and metaphysics, Rice argues that Plato's reluctance to accept the reality and consequences of finitude accounts for much of what many readers find objectionable in his politics. Lively, relatively brief, and designed to provoke discussion in the classroom, A Guide to Plato's Republic is ideal for political theory and introduction to philosophy courses as well as other courses that assign the Republic as a primary text. (shrink)
Esta obra propone una interpretación alternativa de las relaciones entre la ética y la tragedia en Aristóteles sobre la base de una revisión que parte de la Poética, pero no ha quedado encerrada en ella, considerando otros textos ...
In The Crane's Walk, Jeremy Barris seeks to show that we can conceive and live with a pluralism of standpoints with conflicting standards for truth--with the truth of each being entirely unaffected by the truth of the others. He argues that Plato's work expresses this kind of pluralism, and that this pluralism is important in its own right, whether or not we agree about what Plato's standpoint is.The longest tradition of Plato scholarship identifies crucial faults in Plato's theory of Ideas. (...) Barris argues that Plato deliberately displayed those faults, because he wanted to demonstrate that basic kinds of error or illogic have dimensions that are crucial to the establishing of truth. These dimensions legitimate a paradoxical coordination of logically incompatible conceptions of truth. Connecting this idea with emerging currents of Plato scholarship, he emphasizes, in addition to the dialogues' arguments, the importance of their nonargumentative features, including drama, myths, fictions, anecdotes, and humor. These unanalyzed nonargumentative features function rigorously, as a lever with which to examine the enterprise of rational argument itself, without presupposing its standards or illegitimately assimilating any position to the standards of another.Today, communities are torn apart by conflicts within and between a host of different pluralist and absolutist commitments. The possibility developed in this book-a coordination of absolute and relative truth that allows an understanding of some relativist and some absolutist positions as being fully legitimate and as capable of existing in a relation to their opposites-may contribute to perspectives for resolving these conflicts. (shrink)
Aristotle is widely regarded as the greatest of all philosophers; indeed, he is traditionally referred to simply as `the philosopher'. Today, after more than two millennia, his arguments and ideas continue to stimulate philosophers and provoke them to controversy. In this book J.L. Ackrill conveys the force and excitement of Aristotle's philosophical investigations, thereby showing why contemporary philosophers still draw from him and return to him. He quotes extensively from Aristotle's works in his own notably clear English translation, and a (...) picture emerges of a lucid, lively, subtle and tough-minded thinker of astonishing range and penetration. Professor Ackrill identifies many striking connections between Aristotle's ideas and ideas in recent philosophy; he also raises philosophical questions of his own, and exemplifies the way in which Aristotle can still be argued with and learned from. (shrink)
In this volume, the third in his classic series on art theory, Moshe Barasch traces the hidden patterns and interlocking themes in the study of art, from impressionism to abstract art. Barasch details the immense social changes in the creation, presentation, and reception of art which have set the history of art theory on a vertiginous new course: the decreased relevance of workshops and art schools; the replacement of the treatise by the critical review; and the emerging interrelationship between scientific (...) inquiry and artistic theory. The consequent changes in the ways in which critics as well as artists conceptualized paintings and sculptures were radical, marked by an obsession with intense sensory experiences, psychological reflection on the effects of art, and an attraction to the exotic and alien--making for the most exciting and fertile period in the history of art criticism. (shrink)
Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy is a volume of original articles on all aspects of ancient philosophy. The articles may be of substantial length, and include critical notices of major books. OSAP is now published twice yearly, in both hardback and paperback. -/- 'The serial Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy (OSAP) is fairly regarded as the leading venue for publication in ancient philosophy. It is where one looks to find the state-of-the-art. That the serial, which presents itself more as an (...) anthology than as a journal, has traditionally allowed space for lengthier studies, has tended only to add to its prestige; it is as if OSAP thus declares that, since it allows as much space as the merits of the subject require, it can be more entirely devoted to the best and most serious scholarship.' Michael Pakaluk, Bryn Mawr Classical Review. (shrink)