Plato and the Body: Reconsidering Socratic Asceticism

SUNY Press
Free sample

 Offers an innovative reading of Plato, analyzing his metaphysical, ethical, and political commitments in connection with feminist critiques.
For centuries, it has been the prevailing view that in prioritizing the soul, Plato ignores or even abhors the body; however, in Plato and the Body Coleen P. Zoller argues that Plato does value the body and the role it plays in philosophical life, focusing on Plato’s use of Socrates as an exemplar. Zoller reveals a more refined conception of the ascetic lifestyle epitomized by Socrates in Plato’s Phaedo, Symposium, Phaedrus, Gorgias, and Republic. Her interpretation illuminates why those who want to be wise and good have reason to be curious about and love the natural world and the bodies in it, and has implications for how we understand Plato’s metaphysical and political commitments. This book shows the relevance of this broader understanding of Plato for work on a variety of relevant contemporary issues, including sexual morality, poverty, wealth inequality, and peace.

“Zoller gives us a new way of going forward in Plato studies. Her reading of the Platonic conception of embodiment frees it from the negative associations of the past. Plato and the Body will radically shift the scholarly conversation. The book is truly an exhilarating read.” — Anne-Marie Schultz, author of Plato’s Socrates as Narrator: A Philosophical Muse
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About the author

Coleen P. Zoller is Professor of Philosophy at Susquehanna University.

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Additional Information

Publisher
SUNY Press
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Published on
Aug 1, 2018
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Pages
268
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ISBN
9781438470832
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Language
English
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Genres
PHILOSOPHY / History & Surveys / Ancient & Classical
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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