This book offers general suggestions for approaching Plato's Republic, a thematic overview of the text, and discussion of the work's main philosophical themes.
This book is ideal for undergraduate students reading the Republic for the first time.
Plato s Republic is required reading in almost every undergraduate philosophy program. This book offers general suggestions for reading the Republic, a synopsis of each of its ten books, and a thematic discussion of the work s main philosophical themes.
I begin with a brief historical background and some general suggestions for reading Plato s Republic. Thereafter, I analyze the main philosophical points of the work thematically. I will start with the dialogue form, and then move on to ethics, politics, and epistemology and metaphysics. Most guidebooks to the Republic follow the organization of the primary text: my approach is to isolate the main philosophical ideas, and treat them on their own terms. This has some dangers (see especially the chapter on literary form), but also some significant advantages in that ideas can be considered more clearly on their own terms.