The Poetics of the Platonic Dialogue

Martin Puchner

in The Drama of Ideas

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780199730322
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199852796 | DOI:
The Poetics of the Platonic Dialogue

Show Summary Details


In his youth, Plato dreamed of being a successful playwright, but upon hearing Socrates's clever and sharp sayings while on his way to the theater, he became his student instead and was reborn as a philosopher. However, this did not halt his writing, rather, it directed him to write now in a dramatic mode using Socratic dialogue. This chapter provides a dramatic and theatrical perspective of Plato. Here, Plato is explained to be a radical reformer rather than an enemy of theater who aims to illustrate a point about education. Plato's attacks on the theater to seek reform of its fundamental ways are called “antitheatrical prejudice”. Several genres on which Plato adapted his Socratic dialogue are also exemplified in this chapter.

Keywords: Plato; Socrates; philosopher; Socratic dialogue; radical reformer; antitheatrical prejudice

Chapter.  17303 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (Plays and Playwrights)

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.