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Paperback Plato's Republic Book

ISBN: 0915144034

ISBN13: 9780915144037

Plato's Republic

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Like New*

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Book Overview

Grube the translator of Plato's Republic points out "The Republic was probably written about twenty years after Socrates'(a mentor of Plato) and purports to report a conversation supposed to have taken place some thirty or thirty-five years before. It is not an esoteric treatise for students of philosophy, it is addressed to the ordinarily educated man and is intended to be understood by him. There are, it is true, some difficult and highly controversial...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Great for newbies to Plato

I have bee intimidated to launch onto the world of the Republic - however I bought this book with the hope that I could read AND understand the book that is probably the most referenced piece in political science, philosophy, etc. I was delighted to read this book for two major reasons - 1. The translation is in easy to comprehend modern English 2. Prior to each section the author prospectively reviews and calls attention to the pertinent ideas. This is a wonderful book for new-to-the-platonic-world and maybe even for old hats.

Very Well Done.

My intent is not to bog down the reader with a lot of drivel. This is one of the better copies of the republic I have seen and read. I would have prefered a hardcover version, but at this price it is a steal. There are copious footnotes and references which further assist the reader in deciphering one of the most published and interested philosphical texts ever. As far as the work by Plato, it is one of the single most important books ever written and should be read by every person with an above average IQ and a thirst for knowledge and understanding (which begins with truth, thanks Plato!).

Great Political Theory and Philosophy

The main arguments of The Republic are so well known that they hardly need restatement in this review. The central issues in this book are of great importance, but one should also take note of the side issues that Plato raises in political theory and philosophy. Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of this book is its coverage of issues in theoretical politics. The Republic covers so much ground in Political Theory and Political Philosophy that it is hard to see any other great thinker as completely original. Plato hinted at or mentioned ideas in politics later developed by Rousseau, Marx, Nietche, Hayek... All political theorists should cite Plato, because he thought of practically everything of importance in political theory. Personally, I find Rousseau more interesting as a pure political philosopher, but that is not saying much. Rousseau was an absolute genius. Plato had brilliant insights in political philosophy, and he anticipated important elements of Rousseau's work anyway. The Republic does have an Achilles heel: economics (or political economy). The problem here is not so much that he was wrong about economics, but rather than he passed over this subject. Much of what Plato wrote about his ideal Republic is hard to defend in light of economic theory. Some might think me unfair for criticizing Plato by modern standards, but general economic laws were neither different nor unintelligible in Plato's time. Furthermore, Aristotle had a few insights that fit with what we now know as economics. How could someone as brilliant as Plato not see the issues in his book from "the economic point of view"? After all, key elements of modern economics boil down to common sense. Furthermore, there are subtleties to modern economics that raise serious problems with his idea of rule by a philosopher-king. The lack of economic reasoning in The Republic does not really detract much from its greatness. Given the situation in the ancient world, it was only natural that great thinkers would focus on politics, and pass over economics. Economic issues did not really become apparent until the first wave of Globalozation began, so Plato should have focused on politics instead. That being said, Plato's Republic stands as THE most important book of Political Theory ever written. This edition of The Republic is important because it includes Alan Blooms interpretive essay. Bloom makes you think more deeply about Plato. This book is a must-have for anyone with serious interest in political or interdisciplinary academic interests.

The Noble Lie and the body politic

Plato's philosophies regarding how to organize society is very real in today's modern world. The ideas regarding the honor class are clearly seen if one looks closely. I think this book should be required reading at some point in high school--perhaps people would be better able to see the reasoning behind many social structures thereby allowing them to make more informed decisions about what they believe and to whom they consider to be good leaders.

Very good for an inexpensive translation

I'm wrapping up a semester of teaching this translation of Republic, and I've had few complaints. Waterfield's editorial hand is visible, but that in itself, in the hands of a competent teacher, leads to good discussions above and beyond Plato's ideas. With regards to Plato's masterwork, there's no good place to start save reading it for oneself. Plato is dead wrong in places (with regards to poetry and marriage just to get rolling), but his genius is that he's wrong as an idealist philosopher, encouraging readers to assert and refine their own ideals as counter-arguments. In other words, in order to refute Plato, one must out-Plato Plato. Deconstruction is fine for deconstructionists, but a good discussion of this juggernaut of ancient thought is the life for me.
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