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Publisher's Summary

More than 2,000 years later, Plato's Republic remains astonishingly relevant to our everyday lives. It poses one question after another that might well have been drawn from the headlines and debates of our nation's recent history: What sort of person should rule the state? Are all citizens equal before the law? Should everyone have equal access to health care? Plato's greater inquiry, however, was into the question of defining justice itself and the reasons why a person would choose a life aligned with that virtue.
These 24 remarkable lectures lead you through the brilliant dialogue Plato crafted both to define and examine the issues with which political philosophy still grapples.
Chapter by chapter, Professor Roochnik introduces you to Plato's literary recasting of his own great teacher, Socrates, and the dialogue through which Socrates and the Republic's other characters create the hypothetical ideal city. It is by dissecting life in this presumably just city - the "Republic" of Plato's title - that the nature of justice itself can be examined.
Many of Plato's ideas will startle contemporary readers, who may recognize in them the foreshadowing of some of humankind's darkest moments. Indeed, some have called the Republic the "great-great-grandfather of all totalitarian experiments." You'll wrestle with Plato's controversial vision, and you'll be surprised just how contemporary these arguments sound.
©2005 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2005 The Great Courses
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Customer Reviews

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By Ronald on 03-14-14

Simply Excellent

The discussion of Plato's Republic reminds us all of what great a great didactic presentation sounds like. For those of us long-since removed from academia, it makes us long for the type of interchanges we had with a golden few professors who "reached" us and made us want more. Though Professor Roochnik is not Lord Richard Attenborough, he is clearly an expert of the subject matter and is a superb teacher. The mysteries of The Republic (the definition of justice, the analogy of the cave, the divided line and the Myth of Er) are clearly elucidated. Enjoyable, informative and reflective.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

By Bruno on 11-07-13

One of the best courses I have ever heard!

If you could sum up Plato's Republic in three words, what would they be?

The BEST course

What other book might you compare Plato's Republic to and why?

It's incomparable. It's the basis of political filosophy and one of the BEST books known to men. This course the dr. professor explains in great detail every complex passage in the book, giving light to such difficult subject.

Any additional comments?

I will definitely buy other Great Courses just because of this one. It's one of the best audiobooks I have ever heard, and the professor is so knowledgeable that it's quite impressive how you can understand Plato's Republic so easily. He makes it easy!

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11 of 13 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By J A Bennett on 07-21-15

A must for philosophers of any level

What did you like most about Plato's Republic?

A must read for any lover of philosophy, it may not come up with many answers but the questions it poses are timeless. It is presented in a way that brings up all the main themes and guides the listener through parts that may be more difficult to understand. This series of lectures is fantastic value (especially when you get it with your free credits!!!!)

Who was your favorite character and why?

Socrates... obviously

What does Professor David Roochnik bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

The narrator is as you would expect of a philosophy tutor, very reserved in what he actually says, being careful to say exactly what he means so as not to throw the listener off and I think his insights into what plato actually meant in parts were very insightful.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It has opened my mind up to ways of thinking that I would have dismissed if I had not known the logical thought path that the ancients went through to come to those conclusions.

Any additional comments?

Think that sums it up.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

By Mr. P. A. Gower on 01-02-14

Heartily recommended if you are new to Plato

I had gone through Plato's Republic on audible twice and although I had the gist of the main points I felt I hadn't quite understood it. Listening to Roochnik's lectures clarified a lot and then I listened to his lectures and then relevant chapters from The Republic back-to-back which I would recommend.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By Carlo Spada on 01-16-18


It shoes how Plato’s Republic remains a foundational work throughout western philosophy to this date.

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