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The Republic: A New Translation Paperback – August 17, 1996


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The Republic: A New Translation + Eyes of the Heart: Seeking A Path For the Poor in the Age of Globalization + Life of Galileo (Penguin Classics)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (August 17, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393314677
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393314670
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“No one should think of going to a liberal arts college without reading Plato's Republic. It is one of the basic books of the European mind and culture, now freshly and readably rendered by Sterling and Scott. I envy the reader who sits in on these conversations for the first time, and with such a readable text.” (John Ciardi)

“The best translation of the Republic or a Platonic dialogue I know. It gives the reader who has no Greek... a sense of the powerful and delicate style of the dialogue and it is not only a success for Plato's inimitable Greek; it is brilliant in its translations of the Greek poetry quoted in the course of the Republic.” (Diskin Clay, Duke University)

“This new version of Plato's Republic... is founded on a sensitively accurate and highly readable fusion of form and content, style and substance. Plato emerges, as he should, as both thinker and philosophical poet—something that cannot be said of competing versions.” (William Arrowsmith, Emory University)

Language Notes

Text: English, Greek (translation) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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There is an excellent long introduction by the translator, and plenty of helpful notes.
tlightsoul@msn.com
Plato's Republic is one of the most important works in the history of philosophy, and every well-educated person ought to have read it at least once.
Scott Carson
This is crisp in the sense that the word choice allows the reader to move right along, which is a virtue in several settings.
R9

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Arseny A. Tseytlin (tarseny@hotmail.com) on October 18, 1999
Format: Paperback
Firstly I should say that this is not the best translation of the republic. Even though the book is great in itself, the translator have changed the structure of the book by dividing it in 12 books instead of 10. However, the main pro of the book are short paragraphs inside the text which help to understand the ideas of Plato. Also I don't like that the notes are after the text. I think it is better when they are on the same page as the text they refer to.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By R9 on September 18, 2012
Format: Paperback
I have read a few translations of The Republic - Jowett 3 times, Taylor, Sterling and Scott, and 2 more.

Even took a hand at learning to read a bit of Classical Greek, but am not fluent.

This translation has strong merits, and to my view no significant problems. It is not lessened in any way that I can see relative to the others. I say this because the wording of the editorial review made me think they were hinting that it was somehow simplified relative to the others. Not the case.

This is crisp in the sense that the word choice allows the reader to move right along, which is a virtue in several settings. The nice balancing act to cover both readability and meaning with a nice gracefulness.

Pardon me if I am using experiential judgement rather than direct fact here, but do feel obliged to praise this translations as one of my favorites as being both clear and fully in line with the spirit of Platonism.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Canicus on December 19, 2002
Format: Paperback
This translation is superb.
This book provokes us with questions. It challenges our assumptions. It asks questions. It also provides few answers. Don't read this thinking that you'll find the ideal government, because you won't, and as the introduction points out, it was never really the point.
Instead, read this to find out about morality. It cannot help but point a person in the right direction. I don't think it answers the question of what morality is completely, but for that matter, I can't do much better. This is one of my sources.
Clearly, I can't take much of this and apply it directly to politics. I value diversity and conflict. I think that those things help us. Truth can only be found when we seek freely in society. In short, I love democracy. That said, it is very applicable for my inner-life. If I fill my mind with garbage, that is exactly what I will give out. I need to censor the citizens of my mind or else my inner polis will be corrupted more than it is.
It's criticisms of democracy, especially the democratic mind, are particularly poignant. Read it side-by-side with Thucydides and an account of the French Revolution and find the limitations of what we take for granted.
If someone thinks they shouldn't read a book like this because they have the Bible, then they would be in error. I am a Christian, and reading the Bible usually leaves me with more questions than answers. If a person thinks that way he aren't reading the Bible, and should begin criticising his own beliefs. Start by reading Ecclesiastes, and then this, for Ecclesiastes teaches one of Socrates' main points: we know nothing, and in the end, all that matters is how we lived.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By tlightsoul@msn.com on June 10, 1998
Format: Paperback
This is not a comment on the substance of the Republic, which I would not presume to attempt here. I used this translation in a course and had many comments from students on how modern-sounding it seemed to them. (I think this was meant in a complimentary sense.) It is a very fine translation, superior to Cornford and Grube in my opinion. There is an excellent long introduction by the translator, and plenty of helpful notes. With few exceptions the translation is faithful to the original Greek. On the minus side, the type is too small, and the notes are placed at the end rather than in the body of the text, an unnecessary inconvenience. Also, references to other of Plato's works are sparing, which somewhat limits its usefulness as a research resource. But the positives of this book are overwhelming. This is definitely the translation of choice for readers of the Republic.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 4, 1998
Format: Paperback
Waterfield's translation of Plato's classic is excellent. What is most notable here, in my opinion, is his decision to translate Plato's "dikaion" as "morality" rather than "justice". This makes perfect sense: in Aristotle, justice is the virtue (in fact the sum of all other virtues) of our dealings with others, while other virtues are defined as they contribute to individual well being. Greek "justice" is not therefore poitical, as we use the term "justice," rather, it is much more like what we call "morality". Waterfield's choice to fly in the face of convention here is also justified by his contention that the political theory of the REPUBLIC cannot be taken seriously. In fact, Waterfield seems to consider the REPUBLIC to contain much more allegory than that of the Cave, Sun, and Er myths. The whole political schema, he suggests is an allegory of the self. In all, this is a nice translation, highly readable, and very reasonably priced.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Scott Carson on November 18, 2000
Format: Paperback
I've used this text for some time in my undergraduate courses, with great success. Waterfield's translation is accurate and scholarly, and the introduction and notes make this edition a perfect introduction to Plato's philosophy.
As for the value of the text itself, little needs to be said. Plato's Republic is one of the most important works in the history of philosophy, and every well-educated person ought to have read it at least once. There is some controversy among scholars over whether the work is primarily one of political philosophy or of moral psychology, but Plato perhaps did not draw these distinctions the way we do: one can certainly learn a great deal about both areas from reading this one work.
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