Philosophical Genesis: The Three Waves and the City-Soul Analogy in Republic v

In: Polis: The Journal for Ancient Greek and Roman Political Thought
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  • 1 Department of Philosophy, Mercer University, 1501 Mercer University Drive, Macon, ga 31207, USA
  • 2 Department of Philosophy, Mercer University, 1501 Mercer University Drive, Macon, ga 31207, USA

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Abstract

It is conventional to argue that the city-soul analogy of Plato’s Republic dominates Books ii through iv and viii through x but is absent in Books v through vii. We argue that the analogy remains operative in Books v through vii and that its role there, especially as it is played out in the motif of the three waves, illuminates its function in the dialogue as a whole, particularly with respect to the questions: What are the natural dispositions of soul necessary for philosophy? What are the necessary and sufficient conditions for philosophical education?

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