Plato and Theodoret: The Christian Appropriation of Platonic Philosophy and the Hellenic Intellectual Resistance / Edition 1

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Overview

In late antiquity Plato's philosophy became a battlefield between the competing discourses and rival intellectual paradigms represented by Hellenism and Christianity. Focusing on Theodoret of Cyrrhus' Graecarum Affectionum Curatio, Dr Siniossoglou examines the philosophical, rhetorical and political dimensions of the Neoplatonic-Christian conflict of interpretations over Plato. He shows that the apologist's aim was to procure a radical shift in Hellenic intellectual identity through the appropriation of Platonic concepts and terminology. The apologetical strategies of appropriation are confronted with the perspective of the intended audience, the Hellenic elite, by means of comparative discourse analysis. The outcome is a reconstruction of a vital trial of strength between Neoplatonic hermeneutics and the Christian rhetorical mode of rewriting Plato. The 2008 volume concludes that the fundamental Hellenic-Christian opposition outweighed any linguistic merging that might have occurred between the two systems, and that this opposition outlived the dominance of Christianity in late antique society and politics.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521880732
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/2008
  • Series: Cambridge Classical Studies
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 267
  • Product dimensions: 5.43 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.87 (d)

Meet the Author

Niketas Siniossoglou holds a PhD in Ancient Philosophy from the University of Cambridge.

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Table of Contents


Acknowledgements     viii
List of abbreviations     ix
Note on terminology     xi
Introduction: appropriation, interpretation and rhetoric in late antiquity     1
The conflict between Hellenism and Christianity in late antiquity     34
Peri arches: the question of philosophical monotheism     62
Askesis: from Platonic to Christian asceticism     109
Mythos and kosmos: Judaeo-Christian creationism and Plato's cosmology     147
Nomos: the political implications of Judaeo-Christian monotheism     189
Conclusion: Platonic philosophy and the question of Hellenic identity     234
Bibliography     245
Index     259
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