Plato’s Republic (2): Women & Men


Rufus F.

Rufus is an American curmudgeon in Canada. He has a PhD in History, sings in a garage rock band, and does a bunch of other stuff.

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1 Response

  1. Avatar sam says:

    Wasn’t Plato something of a scandal in Athens by allowing women into the Academy? And, interestingly, the only times in the Dialogues when Socrates is said to have been instructed, it was by women.Report

    • Avatar Rufus says:

      @sam, Right, that’s a good point. We discussed this a bit with the Symposium. There Socrates claims to have learned his philosophy of love from Diotima of Martinea, which puts her wisdom above the rest of the group of men, and above Socrates as well. The interesting thing about Socrates in general is that he’s often a bit sexist, but much less so than the other characters in the dialogues. I’m not sure if he admitted women to the academy. I’ll have to look it up.Report

  2. Avatar sam says:

    BTW, one ancient story about Socrates was that he was in the agora so much of the time because Xanthippe was a shrew. Just sayin’.Report

    • Avatar Rufus says:

      @sam, Yeah, I’ve heard there’s some sort of pun with her name and the Greek word for shrew. Unfortunately, I’ve just started studying ancient Greek and, as of now, know about four words in total.Report

  3. Avatar jessi says:

    So THAT’S why we’re treated differently… Socrates sucks!Report

  4. Avatar Maribou says:

    Rufus, I don’t have anything useful to contribute but I just wanted to say how much I enjoy your posts on the classics. Big part of the reason I am visiting this site more and more lately.Report

    • Avatar Rufus F. says:

      @Maribou, Thanks so much! To be honest, I’ve been fretting a bit about the project lately because blogging is, in my opinion, essentially a broadcast medium, and it’s hard to fit the way we respond to literature, with extended first-person essays, into that medium. So, I’m really glad it’s appreciated.Report