PHIL 602 and PHIL 421
'Required' = consider this part of your weekly reading assignment
'Recommended' = this is likely to be very helpful or illuminating, but is not mandatory
'Suggested' = depending on your interests, your philosophical background, and the focus of your project, this may be helpful
'Due' = this is the first date on which the selection will be discussed
Some readings that are required for PHIL 602 will not be required for PHIL 421, and vice-versa.
On the Theaetetus
At least one of ##1-4 is required for PHIL 602, due March 1 (you may choose any or
all of these). At least one of ##1-4 is recommended for PHIL 421, due March 1
(choose any or all).
1. Burnyeat, M.F. "Protagoras and Self-Refutation in Plato's Theaetetus
." Philosophical Review
85 (1976): 172-195. Available online via JSTOR.
2. Castagnoli, L. "Protagoras Refuted: How Clever is Socrates' 'Most Clever' Argument at Theaetetus
23.1 (2004): 3-32. Available online via Kluwer or via Springer Link (Springer seems to work better).
3. Emilsson, E.K. "Plato's Self-Refutation Argument in Theaetetus
171a-c Revisited." Phronesis
39 (1994): 136-149. Available online via Ingenta.
4. Long, A. "Refutation and Relativism in Theaetetus
49 (2004): 24-40. Available online via Ingenta.
5. Stern, P. "The Philosophic Importance of Political Life: On the 'Digression' in Plato's Theaetetus
." The American Political Science Review
96 (2002): 275-289. Available online via JSTOR. Required for PHIL 602, due March 8. It is recommended for PHIL 421, due March 1.
##6 and 7 are both recommended for PHIL 602 and for PHIL 421, due any time during our discussion of the Theaetetus. If you read one, you should read both (Tarrant refers to and challenges Tomin's arguments).
6. Tomin, J. "Socratic Midwifery." The Classical Quarterly
n.s. (New Series) 37 (1987): 97-102. Available online via JSTOR.
7. Tarrant, H. "Midwifery and the Clouds
." The Classical Quarterly
n.s. 38 (1988): 116-122. Available online via JSTOR.
8. Ford, A. "Protagoras' Head: Interpreting Philosophic Fragments in Theaetetus
." The American Journal of Philology
115 (1994): 199-218. Available online via JSTOR. Recommended for PHIL 602, due any time during our discussion of the Theaetetus. Suggested for PHIL 421.
9. Mara, G. "Socrates and Liberal Toleration." Political Theory 16 (1988): 468-495. Available online via JSTOR. Recommended for PHIL 602, due at any time during the semester. Suggested for PHIL 421.
10. Gettier, E. "Is Justified True Belief Knowledge?" Analysis 23 (1963): 121-123. Available on microfilm in Fenwick Library.
the 1960's and 1970's some philosophers in the analytic tradition
explored the idea that "justified true belief" is knowledge. This is
similar (though not identical) to the suggestion in the Theaetetus that true opinion (doxa) with an account (logos) is knowledge (episteme).
If you are interested in this development, here are a few articles with
which you can start. ##10-14 are suggested for both PHIL 602 and PHIL
11. Lehrer, K., and T. Paxson. "Knowledge: Undefeated Justified True Belief." The Journal of Philosophy 66 (1969): 225-237. Available online via JSTOR.
12. Goldman, A. "A Causal Theory of Knowing." The Journal of Philosophy 64 (1967): 357-372. Available online via JSTOR.
13. Meyers, R., and K. Stern. "Knowledge Without Paradox." The Journal of Philosophy 70 (1973): 147-160. Available online via JSTOR.
14. Sosa, E. "On Our Knowledge of Matters of Fact." Mind n.s. 83 (1974): 388-405. Available online via JSTOR.
Further Reading: Works of General Interest(unless otherwise noted, these are suggested readings)
1. On Plato generally
Biskowski, L. "Reason in Politics: Arendt and Gadamer on the Role of the Eide." Polity 31 (1998): 217-244. Available online via JSTOR.
Brickhouse, T.C., and N.D. Smith, eds. Plato's Socrates.
Oxford University Press, 1994.
Cooper, J.M. Reason and Emotion. Princeton University
Gonzalez, F.J., ed. The Third Way: New Directions in Platonic
Studies. Rowman and Littlefield, 1995. The Introduction is
Griswold, C.L. "E Pluribus Unum?" Ancient Philosophy
(1999): 361-397; see also the response by C.H. Kahn and a reply to Kahn
by Griswold in Ancient Philosophy 20 (2000). Available in
Library. Griswold discusses recent work pertaining to the following
among others: whether and in what way Plato's dialogues might be seen
connected or unified; whether some dialogues should be identified as
"middle," or "late," and if so for what reasons and with what
whether there is evidence that Plato or Socrates changed his views over
time; and how if at all views can be ascribed to Plato or Socrates.
______, “Irony in the Platonic Dialogues.”
Philosophy and Literature 26.1
(2002): 84-106. Available online via Project Muse.
Hösle, V. "Interpreting Philosophical Dialogues." Antike
Abendland 48 (2002): 68-90. In Fenwick Library.
Howland, J. "Re-Reading Plato: The Problem of Platonic Chronology." Phoenix 45 (1991): 189-214. Available online via JSTOR.
Mara, G.M. "Democratic Self-Criticism and the Other in Classical
Theory." The Journal of Politics vol. 65, no. 3 (2003):
(This article does not deal directly with the dialogues we will study,
but it makes points that are relevant to the issues they raise.)
Nails, D. The People of Plato. Hackett, 2002. This
looks first of all at which of the characters in Plato's dialogues, and
which of the people they mention, are based on historical people. Nails
then gathers a terrific amount of information on these people,
families, and the events in which they were involved; and lays this out
in a systematic and comprehensible manner. She also presents a
discussion of the "dramatic date" of each dialogue, if that can be
(The "dramatic date" of a dialogue is the date when the action of the
is supposed to take place. For example, the dramatic date of the Apology
must be 399 BCE, as we know from independent information that Socrates'
trial was in 399 BCE.)
Poster, C. "The Idea(s) of Order of Platonic Dialogues and their Hermeneutical Consequences." Phoenix 52 (1998): 282-298. Available online via JSTOR.
Press, G., ed. Who Speaks for Plato? Rowman and
2000. Chapters 1, 2, 4, 5, and 15 may be particularly helpful.
Roochnik, D. The Tragedy of Reason. Routledge, 1990.
Vlastos, G. "The Paradox of Socrates." In Vlastos, Studies
in Greek Philosophy, Vol. II: Socrates, Plato and Their
Tradition. Ed. D.W. Graham. Princeton University Press,
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