The Republic: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Republic

1st Edition

By James Orr

Macat Library

95 pages

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Paperback: 9781912127870
pub: 2017-07-04
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Description

The Republic is Plato's most complete and incisive work – a detailed study of the problem of how best to ensure that justice exists in a real society, rather than as merely the product of an idealized philosophical construct.

The work considers several competing definitions of justice, and looks closely not only at what exactly a "just life" should be, but also at the ways in which society can organise itself in ways that maximise the opportunities for every member to live justly. Much of the discussion is via imagined dialogues, giving Plato the opportunity to deploy the tools of Socratic debate to remarkable effect; nowhere else, it can be argued, is the Socratic dialectic better exemplified than in The Republic.

In large measure, Plato's success is the product of the acute analytical ability that he demonstrates throughout his surviving oeuvre. No one is better at understanding the relationships between the various parts of a successful argument than Plato, and The Republic also demonstrates the Greek philosopher has few peers when it comes to looking for and highlighting the core assumptions that underlie an argument. The demolition of competing views that Plato puts into the mouth of Socrates is based on a series of relentless interventions and counter-examples that this mastery makes possible.

Combining analytical skills with great powers of reasoning to produce a well-structured solution that deals emphatically with counter-arguments, Plato crafts one of the most enduring works of philosophy in the entire western canon.

Table of Contents

Ways in to the text Who was Plato? What does The Republic say? Why does The Republic matter? Section 1: Influences Module 1: The Author and the Historical Context Module 2: Academic Context Module 3: The Problem Module 4: The Author's Contribution Section 2: Ideas Module 5: Main Ideas Module 6: Secondary Ideas Module 7: Achievement Module 8: Place in the Author's Work Section 3: Impact Module 9: The First Responses Module 10: The Evolving Debate Module 11: Impact and Influence Today Module 12: Where Next? Glossary of Terms People Mentioned in the Text Works Cited

About the Author

Dr James Orr holds a DPhil in the philosophy of religion from the University of Cambridge. He is currently the McDonald Postdoctoral Fellow in Theology, Ethics, and Public Life at Christ Church College, Oxford.

About the Series

The Macat Library

Great Works for Critical Thinking

Making the ideas of the world’s great thinkers accessible, affordable, and comprehensible to everybody, everywhere. 

With a growing list of over 180 titles across a broad range of subject areas, Macat works with leading academics from the world’s top universities to produce new analyses that focus on the ideas and the impact of the most influential works ever written. By setting them in context – and looking at the influences that shaped their authors, as well as the responses they provoked – Macat encourages readers to look at these classics and game-changers with fresh eyes.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PHI000000
PHILOSOPHY / General