Penguin Classics, London, 2007, 1955, English; originally published 380 BC in Greek
Nonfiction, General
ISBN: 9780140455113

From the Publisher. Plato’s Republic is widely acknowledged as the cornerstone of Western philosophy. Presented in the form of a dialogue between Socrates and three different interlocutors, it is an enquiry into the notion of a perfect community and the ideal individual within it. During the conversation other questions are raised: what is goodness; what is reality; what is knowledge? The Republic also addresses the purpose of education and the role of both women and men as “guardians” of the people. With remarkable lucidity and deft use of allegory, Plato arrives at a depiction of a state bound by harmony and ruled by “philosopher kings.”

On 4 book lists
Jonathan Barnbrook

Nothing is new and Plato proves it by showing that the basis of democracy that we try to live today is something that he understood the principles of 2,500 years ago. If you are looking to get a hook into ancient civilization and the similarity of principles between us now and humans in “ancient history,” you will find it in this book. It’s written in the style of a dialogue between two people, which makes the book much easier to get into than you might think. (Then move on to read Marcus Aurelius and Seneca as well.)

Hartmut Esslinger

A timeless record of the beginning of “Western culture” and philosophy. (I didn’t like it so much when we had to study it in high school.) One always comes back to it (“sightseers of the truth”)—especially when reading modern philosphers like Ludwig Wittgenstein (“what can be shown cannot be said”).

Michael Sorkin

The book through which I learned how to read closely and had my utopian streak nicely jazzed.

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