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on 30 July 2015
Initially read this pre-university as preparation for my Philosophy degree and actually think it's one of the most integral works in philosophical thinking as it challenges the reader to break everything down to its componant parts, and analyse what is actually needed, relevant, and what's simply desirable. I'm a strong believer that everyone should study some philosophy, but if you're new to it, this is a good place to start. (Bought as a present for someone who has great analytical and philosophical skills, but had never read "The Republic" - they thoroughly enjoyed).
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on 27 April 2018
Plato’s Republic is a dialogue that deals with justice and how it relates to the makeup of the city-state and the righteous man. It was written about 380 BC and has become the his best known work, it is one of the most important documents of political theory and philosophy in general. Plato talks of the meaning of justice and muses on the question of whether or not a just man is in fact happier than the unjust man. In dialogues with Athenians, as well as outsiders, he has Socrates discuss the regimes that currently exist and others that could come into being. The potential of a city-state ruled by a philosopher king is talked of, as well as the roles of philosophers and poetry in society.
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on 2 March 2017
A timeless masterpiece! I love how Socrates identifies morality in the community as each person doing their job, and sticking to it. Socrates also believes women and children should be held in common, which I find very interesting. Socrates' imaginary community really is a good example of a perfect state. Essential reading.
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on 9 March 2012
I have only read 'Book I' and already I feel that I've got my money's worth! The pace of the dialogues between the characters is excellent, with short, concise answers intersecting pertinent, hypothetical questions. Socrates, in particular, reminds me of one of those sarcastic, know it all people but tolerated because of their charm, intelligence and sardonic wit. You get a real sense that Plato has given us the true Socrates which lends great weight to the realism of the scene. You could, albeit the antiquated prose, put this into a modern setting; down the local pub, family barbeque, or even a prison yard! This was a pleasant suprise as I was under the impression that it was just about the subject matter, which of course, it is fundamentally but even so, Plato could have probably wrote a good story about anything.
I'm no philosophy expert(really!!) and was drawn to the book after reading the allegory of the cave which is also worth the price of the book on it's own. If you haven't read the allegory, I suggest you look it up because I promise it will enlighten you but be warned, it might even blow your mind!!
I purposely haven't mentioned the subject matter because, like I said, I've only read the first book and just wanted to emphasize the fact that if you're studying philosophy, why are you reading this? You should already have it! If you are looking for a humorous and enlightening read, then this is for you. The style of writing does take getting used to but I don't think it's as confusing as Shakespeare. Looking forward to the next nine chapters.
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on 23 December 2012
Is the UK an oligarchy - with its powerful banks, police, insurance companies and newspapers? Why, if democracy is so good, do so many voters distrust and dislike politicians? Is Mario Monti, the technocrat Italian prime minister in 2011/2012, the ideal kind of leader (despite his lack of popularity at home) that Socrates describes as the guardian? Will watching TV and shortening our attention spans lead to the degradation of democracy? He wrote it 2,400 years ago and much of it is controversial (particularly his distrust of democracy) but Plato's portrayal of Socrates describing the ideal republic and the ideal person is a marvellous start for an analysis of modern politics, life and discipline. It is long and can be difficult at times but most of it is illuminating, optimistic and well worth studying. It is hard to disagree with his idea wisdom leads you to the best life, and that if you make mistakes you have not reached the right level of wisdom. And could we dispute the four virtues he holds up as being the necessary ones for states and individuals - courage, discipline, justice and, of course, wisdom. A question I would ask is how the reluctant leader/guardian type would come out under the modern Myers-Briggs analysis? Are they INTJs and INTPs?
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on 15 April 2018
Plato laments the hollow lifeless nature of the written word, in The Phaedrus, complaining that one cannot interrogate a book. But The Republic is one of those books that is capable of resurrecting the soul of its author, with each new reading. I have been reading the Republic since I was 20, and every attempt brings with it new recollections and realizations. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
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on 15 February 2012
This is specifically a review of the Kindle edition.

Content-wise, the translation is amazing, and the notes are excellent - it's a highly recommended book.

Notes on the transfer to Kindle: There are some very nice touches here, like the fact that the end-noted notes are linked to wherever they occur in the text. This makes it very easy to "flip" back and forth between notes and text. This has not been done on some other Hackett publishing Kindle transfers, so beware.

The 3 stars is because of the section referencing. Standard referencing of sections in plato looks like "554c8" - that is section 554, subsection c, line 8. In the paperback version this is easily flipped to, but the text contains the information in the margins, and is split out as above: look up section 554, then search down for subsection c.

In the kindle edition, as the section referenced aren't in the margins but incorporated into the text, it would have been useful if they had always included the letter with the section reference - in square brackets or something similar. [554c] - this would have facilitated faster lookups. It sounds like a minor point, but if you are buying this text for study purposes, you often have to flip between many sections, and having to turn pages to find the right subsection is a pain.

Still, some thought has been given to the transfer, so it's not all bad.
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on 10 October 2015
Amazing read. I chuckle sometimes at the conversations. The book was used but a used book is sometimes the best because you know it was loved more than once.
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on 16 June 2016
This edition has a really helpful introduction section which goes through each of the books that make up Plato's Republic. These illuminate the reader as to what to expect and give great insight into the concepts of the Republic as a whole. I recommend to anyone who has little experience of philosophy or Plato's writing not to skip this section. A good read.
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on 24 September 2017
I have always been fascinated with Philosophy & in particular with it's founder Plato. I really enjoyed reading the in-depth information about the early teachings of Philosophy. The more you read on the more it gets more interesting.
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