Item description for Plato : Phaedrus: A Translation With Notes, Glossary, Appendices, Interpretive Essay and Introduction (Focus Philosophical Library) by Plato & Stephen Scully...
This is an English translation of one of Plato's least political dialogue of Socrates and Phaedrus discussing many theme: the art and practice of rhetoric, love, reincarnation, and the soul. It includes an introduction, notes, glossary, appendices, and an interpretive essay and introduction. Also included are rarely seen illustrations, stone carvings and vase paintings.
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.
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Studio: Focus Publishing/R. Pullins Company
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9" Width: 6" Height: 0.4" Weight: 0.5 lbs.
Release Date May 1, 2003
Publisher Focus Publishing/R. Pullins Company
Series Focus Philosophical Library
ISBN 0941051544 ISBN13 9780941051545
Availability 0 units.
More About Plato & Stephen Scully
Plato, the greatest philosopher of ancient Greece, was born in Athens in 428 or 427 B.C.E. to an aristocratic family. He studied under Socrates, who appears as a character in many of his dialogues. He attended Socrates' trial and that traumatic experience may have led to his attempt to design an ideal society. Following the death of Socrates he travelled widely in search of learning. After twelve years he returned to Athens and founded his Academy, one of the earliest organized schools in western civilization. Among Plato's pupils was Aristotle. Some of Plato's other influences were Pythagoras, Anaxagoras, and Parmenides.
Plato wrote extensively and most of his writings survived. His works are in the form of dialogues, where several characters argue a topic by asking questions of each other. This form allows Plato to raise various points of view and let the reader decide which is valid. Plato expounded a form of dualism, where there is a world of ideal forms separate from the world of perception. The most famous exposition of this is his metaphor of the Cave, where people living in a cave are only able to see flickering shadows projected on the wall of the external reality. This influenced many later thinkers, particularly the Neoplatonists and the Gnostics, and is similar to views held by some schools of Hindu dualistic metaphysics.
Plato died in 347 B.C.E. In the middle ages he was eclipsed by Aristotle. His works were saved for posterity by Islamic scholars and reintroduced into the west in the Renaissance. Since then he has been a strong influence on philosophy, as well as natural and social science.
Plato lived in Athens. Plato was born in 428 and died in 347.
Reviews - What do customers think about Plato : Phaedrus: A Translation With Notes, Glossary, Appendices, Interpretive Essay and Introduction (Focus Philosophical Library)?
Without deepest contemplation of the Soul, all is in error. Feb 15, 2006
_I have heard some call this work a confused jumble of unrelated concepts. These people just didn't get it. There is one unified theme to the Phaedrus: without a deep connection to the soul and to the higher Reality only accessible to the soul, then all human endeavors are in error.
_The first part of the dialogue deals with three speeches on the topic of love. This is used only as an example and is not the primary theme (though it is an extremely thorough and compelling examination of the subject.) The first speech (by Lysias) is clearly in error- it is badly composed, badly reasoned, and supports what is clearly the wrong conclusion. The second speech (by Socrates), while an impeccable model of correct rhetoric, and reaching the correct conclusion is also essentially flawed- for it makes no appeal to the deepest fundamental causes of things. Simply put, it lacks soul. The third argument (attributed to Stesichorus) however, delves deeply into the soul. In fact, the core of the argument is centered around the proof of the existence and nature of the soul. That is the consistency here- unless you are Philosopher enough to have looked deeply within your own soul, to have made contact (recollection) with ultimate Reality (Justice, Wisdom, Beauty, Temperance, etc.) then your arguments are just empty words- even if you are accidentally on the correct side.
_The second part of the dialogue concentrates on showing how true rhetoric is more than "empty rhetoric" (i.e. just clever arguments and tricks used to sway the masses.) True rhetoric is shown to literally be the art of influencing the soul through words. It also reads as the perfect description, and damnation, of modern politics and the legal system. No wonder Socrates was condemned to later take poison- he actually BELIEVED in Justice, Truth, and the Good. As a Philosopher he could not compromise on such things for he knew the profound damage and that it would do to his soul and to its "wings."
Brilliant Scholarship Jul 29, 2005
The central problem to any work of literature or philosophy is that of contextualization. Authors do not write in a cultural vacuum by rather in a complex socio-cultural milieu. The further we are removed in time from the author the more out of context the work appears. Plato wrote the Phaedrus for a fifth century BC audience but we as modern readers are no longer familiar with the culture, language, mores, religion, and values of that period.
Scully’s version of the Phaedrus is a masterpiece of modern scholarship. His lucid introduction sets the stage and background for the dialogue. He clearly articulates the practice of pederasty that would have been easily recognizable to Plato’s contemporaries but is completely foreign to us. His footnotes combined are probably longer than the text itself. They include clarification of cultural practices, ancient Greek technological innovations, religious practices, politics, historical figures, problems with translations, and much more.
Scully says, “the two main themes of the Phaedrus are rhetoric and love, and therein lies the difficulty.” He takes each major section of the dialogue and puts in back into context and in doing so he clearly demonstrates the relationship between the two thereby putting an end to the critics of the Phaedrus who claim that the dialogue is disjointed, or is “ruptured”. Scully’s brilliant scholarship puts Plato’s masterpiece into context so that as modern readers we can appreciate Plato’s brilliance.