- Series: Dover Thrift Editions
- Paperback: 288 pages
- Publisher: Dover Publications; 1 edition (April 18, 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0486411214
- ISBN-13: 978-0486411217
- Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.2 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (672 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,294 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Republic (Dover Thrift Editions) 1st Edition
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Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Greek
From the Back Cover
This celebrated philosophical work of the fourth century B.C. contemplates the elements of an ideal state, serving as the forerunner for such other classics of political thought as Cicero's De Republica, St. Augustine's City of God, and Thomas More's Utopia.
Written in the form of a dialog in which Socrates questions his students and fellow citizens, The Republic concerns itself chiefly with the question, "What is justice?" as well as Plato's theory of ideas and his conception of the philosopher's role in society. To explore the latter, he invents the allegory of the cave to illustrate his notion that ordinary men are like prisoners in a cave, observing only the shadows of things, while philosophers are those who venture outside the cave and see things as they really are, and whose task it is to return to the cave and tell the truth about what they have seen. This dynamic metaphor expresses at once the eternal conflict between the world of the senses (the cave) and the world of ideas (the world outside the cave), and the philosopher's role as mediator between the two.
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Top customer reviews
Attempting to understand the nature of justice, Plato gives his vision of a society led by an elite class of guardians who are trained from birth for the task of ruling. The rest of society is composed of soldiers and common people. In the republic, an ideal citizen is one who understands how they can use their abilities for the benefit of society. There is little thought of personal freedom or individual rights in Plato’s republic, since everything is tightly controlled by the guardians for the good of society as a whole. Whether Plato’s republic is an ideal, or even possible society, has been argued for more than twenty-four hundred years.
Whatever your opinion is, Plato's Republic is worth reading for his many varied opinions on a broad range of topics.
Yes, it will be more challenging than reading the daily newspaper or the latest Twilight book. The major difference is that a newspaper keeps you informed and the Twilight series allows you to escape. The Republic will make you search inside of your own mind it will make you think and reflect, you will be a different person if you take the time to work through it. It should strike people as interesting that a book written so long ago can and does carry so much weight today. This is the beauty of the Republic.
I have noticed that some of the negative remarks of the book deal with the translation and not the actual book. I must declare ignorance as far as the worthiness of the translation. All I can say about the translation is that when we read this in school, this was the text that our professor told us we needed to have because of the translation. I found it to have a nice flow to it, but, having not read other versions and not being versed on Classic Greek, all I can say is that it worked for us in the class.
Do your self a favor and pick up this book. You will be challenged but never disappointed.
This translation and commentary are highly recommended.