Platonic Dialogue and the Education of the Reader

Hardcover | March 7, 2014

byA. K. Cotton

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In this volume, Cotton examines Plato's ideas about education and learning. With a particular focus on the experiences a learner must go through in developing philosophical understanding, the book argues that a reader's experience can be parallel in kind and value to that of the interlocutorswe see conversing in the dialogues, in constituting learning. The study suggests that, just as Socratic conversation acts as a context for the interlocutors development of dialectical virtues, so the corpus of Plato's works presents an arena for readers to progress through the different stages of learning, providing them with the stimuli appropriate to theirphilosophical advancement at each point and encouraging them to take increasing responsibility for their own learning. Accordingly, the study proposes that the shape of the corpus, and the changes we observe between early, middle, and late dialogues, are best interpreted with reference to thechanging needs of receivers at different stages of their philosophical development. Individual chapters focus on characterization, argumentation, structure and unity, plot, and myth as means by which the dialogues encourage their readers to engage in this productive and distinctive way.

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In this volume, Cotton examines Plato's ideas about education and learning. With a particular focus on the experiences a learner must go through in developing philosophical understanding, the book argues that a reader's experience can be parallel in kind and value to that of the interlocutorswe see conversing in the dialogues, in const...

Anne K. Cotton teaches Classics at Magdalen College School in Oxford, where she is also Head of Upper School.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:352 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.98 inPublished:March 7, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199684057

ISBN - 13:9780199684052

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Table of Contents

PrefaceAbbreviationsPart I1. Reading Plato's Dialogues2. Readers and Interlocutors3. Developing the Virtues of Dialectic: A Model for ReadingPart II4. Characterization: A Route into Interpretation?5. Argumentation: A Descent into Didactic Dialectic?6. Structure and Unity: Challenging the Reader7. Plot and Action: Process vs. Resolution8. Reading, Learning, and Acting: Becoming Active ReceiversBibliographyIndex