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Plato: Complete Works Outstanding translations by leading contemporary scholars many commissioned especially for this volume are presented here in the first single edition to include the entire surviving corpus of works attributed to Plato in antiquity In his introductory essay, John Cooper explains the presentation of these works, discusses questions concerning the chronology of their composition, comments on the dialogue form in which Plato wrote, and offers guidance on approaching the reading and study of Plato s worksAlso included are concise introductions by Cooper and Hutchinson to each translation, meticulous annotation designed to serve both scholar and general reader, and a comprehensive index This handsome volume offers fine paper and a high quality Smyth sewn cloth binding in a sturdy, elegant edition


10 thoughts on “Plato: Complete Works

  1. Ahmad Sharabiani Ahmad Sharabiani says:

    Complete Works, PlatoPlato was a philosopher in Classical Greece and the founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world He is widely considered the most pivotal figure in the development of philosophy, especially the Western tradition Unlike nearly all of his philosophical contemporaries, Plato s entire work is believed to have survived intact for over 2,400 years Others believe that the oldest extant manuscript dates to circa AD 895, 1100 yea Complete Works, PlatoPlato was a philosopher in Classical Greece and the founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world He is widely considered the most pivotal figure in the development of philosophy, especially the Western tradition Unlike nearly all of his philosophical contemporaries, Plato s entire work is believed to have survived intact for over 2,400 years Others believe that the oldest extant manuscript dates to circa AD 895, 1100 years after Plato s death 1997


  2. Dylan Mcarthur Dylan Mcarthur says:

    The dialogues of Plato have helped renew my faith in life and humanity In college I learned that 1 there is no truth, 2 every assertion is merely someone s perspective and 3 all meaningful inquiry involves a deconstruction of someone else s thoughts i.e someone deluded enough not to know that there isn t any truth and that all is perspective But Plato believed in reason, in the reality of goodness i.e., the better choice , and in the value of the struggle to understand ourselves and the The dialogues of Plato have helped renew my faith in life and humanity In college I learned that 1 there is no truth, 2 every assertion is merely someone s perspective and 3 all meaningful inquiry involves a deconstruction of someone else s thoughts i.e someone deluded enough not to know that there isn t any truth and that all is perspective But Plato believed in reason, in the reality of goodness i.e., the better choice , and in the value of the struggle to understand ourselves and the world He is always fascinating and often hilarious Sometimes my mouth drops open at the depth of his thought Throw in the tinge of gay erotica always around the corner many dialogues begin with Socrates admiring a brave young buck tossing a discus and you have a spicy, life loving, humorous mixture The sheer respect Plato shows his reader is heads and shoulders above the attitude of most writers If you ve got the time, do yourself the favor of reading this book


  3. Tim Tim says:

    It s practically a Bible.


  4. max max says:

    In Greek literature, there are many authors who are excellent and a smaller subset whose ideas and technical literary skills are simply breathtaking Purely in terms of influence by which I mean the degree to which a particular author has reconfigured the intellectual landscape for future generations it is undisputed that the two greatest writers in the Greek literary tradition are Homer and Plato Homer is the poet s poet His vivid descriptive power, dramatic scene building, timeless cha In Greek literature, there are many authors who are excellent and a smaller subset whose ideas and technical literary skills are simply breathtaking Purely in terms of influence by which I mean the degree to which a particular author has reconfigured the intellectual landscape for future generations it is undisputed that the two greatest writers in the Greek literary tradition are Homer and Plato Homer is the poet s poet His vivid descriptive power, dramatic scene building, timeless characters and storytelling power are utterly unrivaled It has been famously observed that all Western philosophy is but a footnote to Plato Likewise, all Western literature is but a footnote to Homer.Plato took philosophy to an entirely new level, and few if any philosophers who wrote subsequently have matched the extraordinary artistry that marks everything he touched.He was of course intimately familiar with the entire literary tradition that preceded him, and chose the dialogue as the vehicle for expounding his ideas The dialogue is by definition a dramatic medium, and Plato exploits its possibilities in many ingenious ways.Plato wrote at a time when human knowledge had yet to become fragmented, and this is what makes reading his work so exciting He was interested in a wide range of subjects that today go by the names of psychology, sociology, metaphysics, ethics, political science, education, linguistics, epistemology, anthropology, jurisprudence, and much else besides This much, if nothing , must be observed about Plato he is a consummate literary artist, and his prose is the best there is in Greek The give and take between speaking participants and the soaring flights of his most awe inspiring passages hold up well in translation, and this volume in particular contains versions that are faithful to the original Greek without being stilted or prosaic


  5. Anthony Anthony says:

    Many reviewers have noted how this book is the Bible of Plato They are correct I recommend this book for anyone who plans to study Plato in depth Containing all the extant works of Plato, this book will not disappoint those who want to experience all of Plato s thought Most pages have footnotes explaining unclear references to historical places, or other important concepts The introduction is superb, providing details to approaching the writings of Plato It is a helpful guide for those wh Many reviewers have noted how this book is the Bible of Plato They are correct I recommend this book for anyone who plans to study Plato in depth Containing all the extant works of Plato, this book will not disappoint those who want to experience all of Plato s thought Most pages have footnotes explaining unclear references to historical places, or other important concepts The introduction is superb, providing details to approaching the writings of Plato It is a helpful guide for those who are unfamiliar with Plato or the study of philosophy.Alfred Whitehead once said, the European Philosophical tradition consists of a series of footnotes to Plato After reading the works of Plato contained in this volume, it will be clear as to why he made this statement Plato explores nearly all the major branches of Philosophy In fact, he defines them Metaphysics, Epistemology, Ethics, and Aesthetics are all included in Plato s philosophy Only formal logic is absent Those looking for the historical foundations of logic will need to turn to Aristotle Plato s philosophy is not without flaws For instance, his political philosophy argues for a society that would restrict much of the freedoms and individuality of its citizens A society ruled over by a so called philosopher king And, while his metaphysics are profound, they also contradict much of the findings of modern science However, it is important for the reader to reach his own interpretations of the text One of the greatest gifts of Plato and any good philosopher are their ability to make you question your preexisting notions of the world Regardless of whether I think Plato is right or wrong on these issues, the reader should carefully consider Plato s words and decide for himself Having done this, most diligent first time readers will begin to question and think like a philosopher.Overall, I highly recommend this volume


  6. Gabriel Gabriel says:

    Well, I m notfinished , you can t be finished with Plato, but I gotta move on I ll be coming back to this volume sooner or later.


  7. L L says:

    As a pupil at one of the branches of the school of practical philosophy the school of economic science , I am keen to explore different philosopher s work indetail Plato, I find to be extremely transparent, very insightful and knowledgeable His dialogues in this collection come from various sources from his Republic, Phaedo, Timaeus, Meno, Phaedrus, Symposium and Parmenides. It is a good English translation of the Greek text, and one that is ideal for philosophy students Plato places As a pupil at one of the branches of the school of practical philosophy the school of economic science , I am keen to explore different philosopher s work indetail Plato, I find to be extremely transparent, very insightful and knowledgeable His dialogues in this collection come from various sources from his Republic, Phaedo, Timaeus, Meno, Phaedrus, Symposium and Parmenides. It is a good English translation of the Greek text, and one that is ideal for philosophy students Plato places specific importance upon pure love in knowing the truth, for after all philosophy translates as loving wisdom One should be in Plato s book as willing to be refuted, and is thus free from ignorance This book containing extracts for study, begins with passages on the similitude of the sun and the divided line It covers all the levels of one s perception, and how the soul may rise out of the shadows Plato then explains his allegory of the cave, which is a reflection of reality or the truth And asks the question, when one is introduced to the light as to what they see Certain professors of education must be wrong when they say that they can put a knowledge into the soul which was not there before The power and capacity for learning exists in the soul already The instrument of knowledge according to Plato requires tuning of the soul This book then also covers the dialectic, which is where science and reason correlate It explores discovering the Absolute by the power of reason and with pure intelligence finding all that is good The intellect, understanding, belief and perception Education and the chance to answer questions to Plato is always highly regarded This book then looks at the immortality of the soul a challenge for the mind to contemplate in reality Then, there is the myth of Er, on what is justice and just versus unjust actionHear the word Mortal souls behold a new cycle of life and mortality Your genius will not be allotted to you, but you will choose your genius and let him who draws the first lot have the first choice, and the life which he chooses will be his destiny Then, this book covers Platonic solids such as various shapes in three dimensional forms Music is also another largely covered topic, being the most potent form of education It discusses the various harmonies and their effects Valuing simplicity, and the ability of music to impart grace to the soul One s melody, softness and style Rhythm and harmony find there way into the inward places of the soul This book finally then covers the four virtues, the location of justice in the newly created state The nature of justice, including bits about law and politics Then there are sections on the philosopher, democracy and the forms of government Oligarchy, timarchy, democracy and tyranny, as all learning is a recollection, beauty and Diotima on love This collection of Plato s most iconic writings is illuminating and insightful and something that I would definitely recommend to economics, law and philosophy students A worthwhile read


  8. Michelle Michelle says:

    made me think too much philosophy just spurs onquestions.


  9. Erick Erick says:

    Other than the Bible, I m not sure there s a collection of writings that have influenced Western civilizationthan Plato s.Given it s cumbersome size, I had recently read many of the dialogues here in other translations in volumes ofmanageable size I read all the dialogues in this collection that I had not yet read elsewhere.


  10. Matthias Matthias says:

    For the long version of this review, see my notes and highlights For the short version of this review feel free to skip the early dialogues, and read for cultural weirdness and prompts to thinking rather than wise Plato will tell me how to be virtuous or the equally understandable and equally useless counter reaction of wow look at how bad Plato s opinions are I didn t read any of these as closely as they deserved though I did make a daily discursive meditation practice out of it, which For the long version of this review, see my notes and highlights For the short version of this review feel free to skip the early dialogues, and read for cultural weirdness and prompts to thinking rather than wise Plato will tell me how to be virtuous or the equally understandable and equally useless counter reaction of wow look at how bad Plato s opinions are I didn t read any of these as closely as they deserved though I did make a daily discursive meditation practice out of it, which is another valuable thing I got from this and I tried to stay away from secondary literature, because you only get to go in blind once Both are reasons to revisit many of these dialogues, obviously For the medium version, a few themes that stuck out at me The division of laborThe economics of the division of labor play a central role in all of the most seminal thinkers of the transition to modernity Smith, Marx, Weber I was surprised to find that this was true of Plato as well, because it seems incidental in just about every dialogue other than Laws which no one reads and Republic which, to be fair, everyone does But you read every dialogue and it looms in every single one, I think it s fair to say that there s something going on Socrates asks some variation of is this knowledge like the knowledge of a medical doctor of a ship s pilot of a cobbler so consistently that there are even meta jokes around it, like a TV show where the writers start responding to the fans memes.Plato s position as an aristocrat in a sort of democratic society with a huge slave population and a booming commercial economy is the obvious background here He s got snobbery towards manual workers of all kinds and especially towards the enslaved, whose capacity for virtue is constantly impeached and not as an overt condemnation of slavery, though you could probably develop it in that direction He s got a hierachical model of metaphysics and love that matches this vertical principle But the division of labor, and its creation of bonds of mutual dependence, exists in a constant dialectical tension with this The specialized knowledge of the philosopher and of virtue is constantly adduced from examples to specialized knowledge in other fields, as is the need to always defer to the relevantly specialized person In Republic, most prominently, the need for specialized production forms the basis for civilization as such, no less than in Smith and, no less than in Marx, a multitude of evils flow from the establishment of class society, though that is glossed over and justice comes to be defined as everyone sticking to their own place.Form, medium, and ironyFrom the beginning, when Socrates protests to the criminal court that he s at a loss because he lacks natural eloquence and launches into a highly eloquent and stylized speech, to written condemnations of writing, to sophistical refutations of sophists, Plato is really interested in form content tensions And dialogues are great at this, because 1 while a wholly written form they are oneobviously in imitation of speech than other genres, and 2 by placing the words in the mouth of another, you getcritical distance between what is said and what Plato thinks That said, despite or rather alongside all the critical comments on writing, you can see the shift from aspeakerly style in the beginning to awriterly one later on, one that redounds to the benefit of the subtlety and interestingness of the dialogues That is, the most frustrating thing about the early dialogues is how, with granted a bit of stylistic smoothing over, they seem like the sort of philosophical conversation Socrates might have had with real life Athenians something that would besatisfying if they weren t constantly leaning on the fact that people are a lot easier to lead around, and a lot less capable of spotting a contradiction, in spoken than written word The problem with the early dialogues, then, is that Socrates has few worthy opponents, and so his tripping them up doesn t lead to many interesting conclusions.Later on, we shift from this to worthier opponents, longer speeches, andabiguous and subtle claims, which increasingly take the form of myths And the myths are just great Can you spot the structural parallels inversions between the Ring of Gyges and the Cave And I suspect they are great largely because they force you to do what the early Socrates doesn t, which is read charitably The power of wordsThis is perhaps an expansion of the above, but Plato is very concerned with the power that words have, and the ability to derive truth value from discourse or dialectic alone This is clear in his two most consistent opponents the Sophists, who argue cynically, too unfaithfully to dialectic and then the worthy opponent, Parmenides, who speaks seemingly too faithfully to dialectic, so constrained that he can t speak of anything but a metaphysical abstraction Both of these are temptations to Socrates and Plato s entire project of arriving at a not merely instrumentally practical as the sophists and not merely self consistent as the Eleatics form of dialectic.NumerologyThere s something going on with the number four in Plato, with it signifying, maybe, completion Is this a Pythagorean thing idk guess i should get around to that secondary reading


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