R.E. Allen's superb new translations of four Socratic dialogues-Ion,Hippias Minor,Laches, andProtagoras-bring these classic texts to life for modern readers. Allen introduces and comments on the dialogues in an accessible way, inviting the reader to reexamine the issues continually raised in Plato's works.In his detailed commentary, Allen closely examines the major themes and central arguments of each dialogue, with particular emphasis onProtagoras. He clarifies each of Plato's arguments and its refutation; places the themes in historical perspective; ties each theme to interpretations of rival translations; and links the philosopher's thought to trends in late modern philosophy. Topics discussed include: whether virtue is an art, whether wisdom and courage are logically equivalent, whether virtue is knowledge, and whether to know the good is to do it. Allen connects his discussion of these issues to the Benthamite tradition of hedonism and utilitarianism and to the ethical theories of Mill, Sidgwick, Moore, and Freud.
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