The most controversial part of Plato's Republic is its fifth book, wherein Socrates argues for the political equality of men and women, the abolition of the nuclear family, a strange eugenics program, and the idea that philosopher kings and philosopher queens should be put in charge of political affairs. Joining us to discuss book 5 is Mary Townsend, assistant professor of philosophy at Saint John's University in Queens and author of the book The Woman Question in Plato's Republic. *** Support the project Via Patreon: patreon.com/greecepodcast Or through a one-time donation: paypal.me/greecepodcast *** Transcript of the Episode's Prologue The Republic is a dialogue whose ostensible purpose is to define justice. As you’ll remember from last time, that is accomplished in book 4 (out of ten books). So at this point, you might be wondering, What is Plato going to do with the remaining 60% of the work? Well, remember how at the very beginning of this series we discussed the onion-like structure of the Republic – how the entire book resembles an onion chopped through the middle? It’s got this concentric ring structure where the beginning and end mirror each other, the second part from the beginning is echoed in the penultimate section, third from the beginning corresponds to third from the end etc. After having gradually constructed the ideal polis and defined justice, the logical next step for Socrates to bring out this symmetrical structure of the dialogue would be to methodically deconstruct the ideal state
How does Plato's theory of a tripartite soul hold up from the perspective of modern psychology?
What do Plato's Republic, Sigmund Freud, and the Harry Potter saga have in common? Find out in this deep-dive into book 4 of the Republic.
Few today know about Alexander's father Philip II, who transformed Macedonia from a backwater kingdom into a major world power and who built and trained the army that Alexander then inherited and used to conquer the mighty Persian Empire.
In the second half of book 3 of the Republic, Plato lays out the controversial theory of mimesis, which states that all art, man-made objects, and cultural products in our environment have profound effects on the health of our souls.
Following Socrates' claim that the ideal republic should be ruled by a class of 'guardians,' the question arises: Who or what will keep these guardians in check?
Our exploration of Plato's Republic continues with this discussion of book 2 with philosopher Rachel Barney. Is the fear of God necessary for morality? How can you educate people so that they value and practice justice?
If you gave people the power to do anything they wanted and never face any consequences for their actions, would they inevitably turn into monsters? Or are there reasons why we should be motivated to behave morally and justly even when all external constraints on our behavior are lifted?
Our series on Plato’s Republic continues with this deep dive into book 1. What makes it good philosophy? What makes it fine literature? And what does book 1 accomplish in the context of the entire Republic?
A foundational text in both ethics and political thought, the Republic was born out of Plato's traumatic experiences as a young man witnessing factional violence and civil war.
Rome conquered the world without a professional army, relying instead on its citizens to take up arms when necessary. How did Rome's part-time soldiers defeat all the great powers of ancient Mediterranean?
Penelope is one of the most compelling yet enigmatic characters from Greek mythology. Homerist Olga Levaniouk joins us to illuminate the complexities of her character and role in the Odyssey.
The Athenian historian Thucydides observed and chronicled the greatest military conflict of his day: the epic contest between Athens and Sparta known as the Peloponnesian War (431-404BC). More than just a straightforward history, his work is a study of the struggle between democracy and oligarchy, as well as a meditation on the dangers of populism and political polarization. Perhaps for this reason, Thucydides' work has experienced a surge in popularity over recent years as polarization and civil strife have spread throughout the developed world. In this episode we are joined by Emily Greenwood, professor of classics at Yale University and author of Thucydides and the Shaping of History. Our conversation covers Thucydides' historical context, his ambition and purpose in writing his history, his insights and blindspots, and his relevance to our world. Stick around at the end of the episode for a chance to win an autographed edition of Greenwood's book Thucydides and the Shaping of History. *** The intro to this episode was provided by Dr. Greenfield and Dr. Radford of The Partial Historians podcast. Dr. G and Dr. Rad both hold PhD's in Roman history and they offer a unique take on the Roman world that combines humor, storytelling, and scholarly rigor. Check out their show at partialhistorians.com. *** Support us on Patreon: patreon.com/greecepodcast Or make a one-time donation: paypal.me/greecepodcast *** Scholarly works mentioned during the conversation: The Blinded Eye: Thucydides and the New Written Word by Greg Crane (particularly Chapter 4: “Thucydidean Exclusions and the
What institutions do oligarchic regimes use to maintain power? How do they fend off the threat of democratic revolution? What happened to the many oligarchies of the ancient Mediterranean?
What defines an oligarchy? Is the United States one? How do ancient oligarchies compare with modern authoritarian regimes?