Philosophical Books about Socrates
Philosophical Books about Socrates
It’s time to learn some things about Socrates! This ancient philosopher is credited with laying the foundation of Western Philosophy. You’d think he would have been a prolific writer, however that is not the case. According to writers from the time, he mostly wandered around the Agora in ancient Athens Greece and prodded the minds of the youth. Questions of virtue and ethics surrounding his mind as he used the Socratic Method to make people think and uncover the truths for themselves. It all went well until Athens turned their back on him and sentenced him to death! So how do we read or listen to his teachings? Through his students of course! Luckily his students like Plato wrote some things down!
Plato: Five Dialogues: Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, Meno, Phaedo
The first book to read to understand more about Socrates would have to be the Apology, by Plato. It’s Plato’s version of Socrates’ court speech. In total Plato wrote five dialogues that showcase Socrates philosophy.
Publisher Description: The second edition of Five Dialogues presents G. M. A. Grube's distinguished translations, as revised by John Cooper for Plato, Complete Works. A number of new or expanded footnotes are also included along with an updated bibliography.
Socrates, Ironist and Moral Philosopher
This is the second book most teachers of philosophy recommend.
Publisher Description: This vivid and compelling study of Socrates’s moral philosophy and, more generally, of his moral outlook and his attitude toward religion and society, reclaims the remarkable originality of his thought. Gregory Vlastos shows us a Socrates who, though he has been long overshadowed by his successors, Plato and Aristotle, represented the true turning point in Greek attitude toward philosophy, religion, and ethics. In his quest for the historical Socrates, Vlastos focuses on Plato's earlier dialogues, setting the Socrates we find there in sharp contrast to the Socrates of later dialogues, in which he is used as a mouthpiece for Plato's own doctrines, many of them anti-Socratic in nature.
At the heart of the book is Vlastos's perception of the paradoxical nature of Socratic thought. But Vlastos explains the paradoxes rather than explaining them away, and he highlights the tensions in the Socratic search for the answer to the question: How should we live? The magnetic quality of Socrates' personality emerges throughout his book. Clearly and elegantly written, subtle in its arguments yet entirely accessible to non-specialists, this is major work in ancient philosophy and the history of Western thought.
Socrates by George Rudebusch
Publisher Description: Socrates presents a compelling case for some life-changing conclusions that follow from a close reading of Socrates' arguments.
Offers a highly original study of Socrates and his thought, accessible to contemporary readers
Argues that through studying Socrates we can learn practical wisdom to apply to our lives
Lovingly crafted with humour, thought-experiments and literary references (from the Iliad to Harry Potter), and with close reading sof key Socratic arguments
Aids readers with diagrams to make clear complex arguments
Socrates: A Very Short Introduction
by Christopher Taylor
Publisher Description: Socrates has a unique position in the history of philosophy. It is no exaggeration to say that had it not been for his influence on Plato, the whole development of Western philosophy might have bee unimaginably different. Yet Socrates wrote nothing himself, and our knowledge of him is derived primarily from the engaging and infuriating figure who appears in Plato’s dialogues. In this book, Christopher Taylor explores the relationship between the historical Socrates and the Platonic character, and examines the enduring image of Socrates as the ideal exemplar of the philosophic life – a thinker whose moral and intellectual integrity permeated every detail of his life, even in the face of betrayal and execution by his fellow Athenians.
Whatever you choose to read or listen to, we think it’ll be worth it. Do you have any book recommendations about Socrates, message us or comment below!
Join us by learning more about the ancient life of Socrates and let’s see if it hold the key to finding out what it means to be human in this crazy world.