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The Music of the Republic: Essays on Socrates' Conversations and Plato's Writings

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Overview

In this collection of essays, Eva Brann talks with readers about the conversations Socrates has with his fellow Athenians. She shows how Plato's dialogues and the timeless matters they address remain important to us today. From introductory pieces on the Republic, the Phaedo, and the Sophist to an account of the less well known Charmides, each essay starts where Plato starts, without presupposing a critical theory. In the title essay's brilliant account of the Republic, Brann demonstrates its central importance ...

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The Music of the Republic: Essays on Socrates' Conversations and Plato's Writings

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Overview

In this collection of essays, Eva Brann talks with readers about the conversations Socrates has with his fellow Athenians. She shows how Plato's dialogues and the timeless matters they address remain important to us today. From introductory pieces on the Republic, the Phaedo, and the Sophist to an account of the less well known Charmides, each essay starts where Plato starts, without presupposing a critical theory. In the title essay's brilliant account of the Republic, Brann demonstrates its central importance in Plato's work. Other essays consider Plato's notion of time, discuss how to teach Plato to undergraduates' and contend that a thoughtful text-based study of Plato can have a very personal impact on a reader. Encouraged to befriend the dialogues, readers will join in the great Socratic conversations.

"It is a wonder and a delight to be led by Eva Brann through the Socratic conversations. She begins from first impressions and moves through perplexity to clarity, without losing the thread. Those who do not know the Republic, will be initiated into its treasures. Those who believe that it is a great book will understand better what they already know. And all who teach the dialogues will find their souls expanded in the presence of this most generous teacher."—Ann Hartle, Emory University

"Imagine a reluctant guide to Plato's writings, one concerned not to preemptively explain, rather wanting readers directly to join Socratic conversations, one deeply and broadly learned in both the texts and the world of ancient Greece, at the same time one fully alive to the sources of philosophic wonder and the possibilities of such conversations in our time, and one who leads readers with the rare gift of luminous graceful prose. This is Eva Brann. How very welcome that her long treasured substantial essay 'The Music of the Republic,' which gives this collection its center and title, is here made more readily available for all who share her enthusiasm for Plato's writings." —Walter Nicgorski, University of Notre Dame / Editor, The Review of Politics

"The title essay of this collection is a miniature masterpiece, one of the most seminal writings of our time on Plato's Republic." —John Sallis, Pennsylvania State University

Eva Brann is a member of the senior faculty at St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland, where she has taught for over fifty years. She is a recipient of the National Humanities Medal. Her other books include The Logos of Heraclitus, Feeling Our Feelings, Homage to Americans, Open Secrets / Inward Prospects, Un-Willing, and Homeric Moments (all published by Paul Dry Books).

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Brann is a member of the senior faculty of St. John's College in Annapolis, MD, whose undergraduate program is an "all-required course of study based on the great books of the Western tradition." Ancient Greek philosophy and related classics are not only de rigueur in that tradition but the foundation of it, and Brann has devoted her life, teaching career, research, and publications to them. The 14 essays collected here focus on the Republic and the Sophist, but elements pertinent to the inquiry from the Phaedo, Apology, Charmides, and Timaeus are also analyzed. Reading this book feels like sitting in one of Brann's classrooms, as she and the reader attempt to come to terms with what the ancient philosophers thought regarding the nature of justice, goodness, equality, rationality, opinion, knowledge, appearance, reality, being, nonbeing, the place of the citizen in the polis, and much more. The narrative is engaging, but make no mistake: it is tough going. The author is fluent in ancient Greek, refers often to relevant philosophical terms and concepts in the original works, and creates-or re-creates-a world that often seems to the modern consciousness as something quite alien. The complexity of the dialectic here is such that the book is appropriate for academic subject collections only, but for these collections it is highly recommended.-Leon H. Brody, U.S. Office of Personnel Management Lib., Washington, DC Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781589880757
  • Publisher: Dry, Paul Books, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/18/2011
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 378
  • Sales rank: 1,206,977
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Eva Brann is a member of the senior faculty at St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland, where she has taught for fifty-seven years. She is a recipient of the National Humanities Medal. Her other books include The Logos of Heraclitus, Feeling Our Feelings, Homage to Americans, Open Secrets / Inward Prospects, The Music of the Republic, and Homeric Moments (all published by Paul Dry Books).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2014

    An excellent, insightful and interesting piece. Take it from a p

    An excellent, insightful and interesting piece. Take it from a philosophy/liberal arts aficionado: worthwhile reading.

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