Self-Knowledge in the Eye-Soul Analogy of the Alcibiades

In: Phronesis
View More View Less
  • 1 Department of Philosophy, Yale University, 108 Connecticut Hall, Old Campus, 314 College Street, New Haven CT, USA

Purchase instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):

€25.00$30.00

Abstract

The kind of self-knowledge at issue in the eye-soul analogy of the Alcibiades (132d5-133c7) is knowledge of one’s epistemic state, i.e. what one knows and does not know, rather than knowledge of what one is. My evidence for this is the connection between knowledge of one’s epistemic state and self-improvement, the equivalence of self-knowledge to moderation, and the fact that ‘looking’ into the soul of another is a metaphor for elenctic discussion. The final lines of the analogy (133c1-7) clarify that the part of the soul one ‘looks’ into and the part one learns about when learning about one’s epistemic state is divine.

  • Annas, J. (1985). Self-Knowledge in Early Plato. In: D. J. O’Meara, ed., Platonic Investigations (Washington), pp. 111-138.

  • Belfiore, E. S. (2012). Socrates’ Daimonic Art: Love for Wisdom in Four Platonic Dialogues. Cambridge.

  • Benson, H. H. (2003). A Note on Socratic Self-Knowledge in the Charmides. Ancient Philosophy 23, pp. 31-47.

  • Brickhouse, T. C. and Smith, N. D. (1991). Socrates’ Elenctic Mission. Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy 9, pp. 131-159.

  • Brunschwig, J. (1996). La déconstruction du ‘Connais-toi toi-même’ dans l’Alcibiade Majeur. In M.-L. Desclos, ed., Réflexions contemporaines sur l’antiquité classique (Grenoble), pp. 61-84.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Burnyeat, M. F. (1977). Socratic Midwifery, Platonic Inspiration. Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies 24, pp. 7-16.

  • Carlini, A. (1963). Studi sul testo della quarta tetralogia platonica. Studi italiani di filologia classica 34, pp. 169-189.

  • Cooper, J. M., ed. (1997). Plato: Complete Works. Indianapolis.

  • Denyer, N., ed. (2001). Plato: Alcibiades. Cambridge.

  • Favrelle, G., ed. and tr. (1982). Eusèbe de Césarée: La préparation évangélique, Livre XI. With Greek text revised by E. des Places. Sources Chrétiennes 292. Paris.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Frede, D., tr. (1997). Philebus. In: Cooper (1997), pp. 398-456.

  • Giannopoulou, Z. (2015). Self-Knowledge in Plato’s Theaetetus and Alcibiades I. Proceedings of the Boston Area Colloquium in Ancient Philosophy 30, pp. 73-93.

  • Gill, C. (2006). The Structured Self in Hellenistic and Roman Thought. Oxford.

  • Griffin, M., tr. (2015). Olympiodorus: Life of Plato and On Plato First Alcibiades 1-9. New York.

  • Grube, G. M. A., tr. (1997). Apology. In: Cooper (1997), pp. 17-36.

  • Hackforth, R. (1936). Plato’s Theism. The Classical Quarterly 30, pp. 4-9.

  • Havet, L. (1921). Platon, Alcib. 133c. Revue de philologie, de littérature et d’histoire anciennes 45, pp. 87-89.

  • Hutchinson, D. S., tr. (1997). Alcibiades. In: Cooper (1997), pp. 557-95.

  • Jirsa, J. (2009). Authenticity of the Alcibiades I: Some Reflections. Listy filologické 132, pp. 225-244.

  • Johnson, D. M. (1999). God as the True Self: Plato’s Alcibiades I. Ancient Philosophy 19, pp. 1-19.

  • Joosse, A. (2014). Dialectic and Who We Are in the Alcibiades. Phronesis 59, pp. 1-21.

  • Kahn, C. H. (1988). Plato’s Charmides and the Proleptic Reading of Socratic Dialogues. The Journal of Philosophy 85, pp. 541-549.

  • Kraut, B. H. (1983). Two Papyri from the Princeton Collection. Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 51, pp. 75-79.

  • Kühner, R., and Gerth, B. (1898). Ausführliche Grammatik der Griechischen Sprache. 3rd edn. 2 vols. Hannover / Leipzig.

  • Matthiae, A. (1832). A Copious Greek Grammar. Vol. II. English translation by E. V. Blomfield. 5th edn. London.

  • McKim, R. (1985). Socratic Self-Knowledge and ‘Knowledge of Knowledge’ in Plato’s Charmides. Transactions of the American Philological Association 115, pp. 59-77.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Menn, S. P. (1995). Plato on God as Nous. Carbondale.

  • Rappe, S. L. (1995). Socrates and Self-Knowledge. Apeiron 28, pp. 1-24.

  • Remes, P. (2013). Reason to Care: The Object and Structure of Self-Knowledge in the Alcibiades I. Apeiron 46, pp. 270-301.

  • Schleiermacher, F. D. E. (1836). Introductions to the Dialogues of Plato. English translation by W. Dobson. Cambridge.

  • Smyth, H. W. (1920). A Greek Grammar for Colleges. New York.

  • Sprague, R. K., tr. (1997). Charmides. In: Cooper (1997), pp. 639-63.

  • Tarrant, H. (2015). Where did the mirror go? The text of Plato [?] Alcibiades I 133c1-6. Elenchos 36, pp. 361-372.

  • Tuozzo, T. M. (2011). Plato’s Charmides: Positive Elenchus in a ‘Socratic’ Dialogue. Cambridge.

  • Werner, D. (2013). The Self-Seeing Soul in the Alcibiades I. Ancient Philosophy 33, pp. 307-331.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 235 165 5
Full Text Views 133 96 3
PDF Downloads 78 59 4