Plato’s Republic

29 Jun, 2017 100 Philosophy

Is it always better to be just than unjust? That is the central question of Plato’s Republic, discussed here by Melvyn Bragg and guests. Writing in c380BC, Plato applied this question both to the individual and the city-state, considering earlier and current forms of government in Athens and potential forms, in which the ideal city might be ruled by philosophers. The Republic is arguably Plato’s best known and greatest work, a dialogue between Socrates and his companions, featuring the allegory of the cave and ideas about immortality of the soul, the value of poetry to society, and democracy’s vulnerability to a clever demagogue seeking tyranny.

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  • Angie Hobbs 24 episodes
    Professor of the Public Understanding of Philosophy at the University of Sheffield
  • MM McCabe No other episodes
    Professor of Ancient Philosophy Emerita at King's College London
  • James Warren 4 episodes
    Fellow of Corpus Christi College and a Reader in Ancient Philosophy at the University of Cambridge

Reading list

  • An Introduction to Plato's Republic
    Julia Annas (Oxford University Press, 1998) Google Books →
  • Plato and the Divided Self
    Rachel Barney, Tad Brennan and Charles Brittain (Cambridge University Press, 2012) Google Books →
  • The Cambridge Companion to Plato's Republic
    G. R. F. Ferrari (ed.) (Cambridge University Press, 2007) Google Books →
  • Plato and the Hero: Courage, Manliness and the Impersonal Good
    Angela Hobbs (Cambridge University Press, 2000) Google Books →
  • Plato's Republic
    Angela Hobbs (Ladybird Expert Book, to be published 2018 ) Google Books →
  • Utopia 1516
    Thomas More (trans. Dominic Baker-Smith) (Penguin, 2012) Google Books →
  • The Tanner Lectures on Human Values: 18
    Grethe B. Peterson (ed.) (University of Utah Press, 1997) Google Books →
  • The Continuum Companion to Plato
    Gerald A. Press (ed.) (Bloomsbury, 2012) Google Books →
  • The Blackwell Guide to Plato's Republic
    Gerasimos Santas (ed.) (Wiley-Blackwell, 2006) Google Books →
  • Plato
    Malcolm Schofield (Oxford University Press, 2006) Google Books →

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Hello (First sentence from this episode) Hello. Plato's Republic, written around 380 BC, explores whether it's always better to be just than unjust and is seen as a cornerstone of Western philosophy.