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NOTE: There is a widespread impression that when Socrates describes his ideal city of The Republic he is saying something like the following: "In order to have an ideal city you must do it just this way." But the impression is a bad one because it ignores completely the significance of Book VII with Plato's famous Allegory of the Cave. Whatever Socrates says about what the city looks like must be viewed as so many shadows on the wall. The point is to see the form of it. And the form of it may be reduced to the four concepts of Book IV: Wisdom, Courage, Temperance, and Justice. These four concepts in fact structure the history of ethics as developed for example through the Cardinal Virtues of Aquinas, his mentor Aristotle ("The Philosopher"), etc.--gm

Background[edit]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Republic_(Plato)

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/plato-ethics-politics/

Media[edit]

Republic Part One intro to life and works

Republic Part Two begins with Thrasymachus, adds background of trial and death, moves into outline of Republic

Republic Part Three more detail on vision of Republic, women, art, form

Republic Part Four allegory of the cave, fascist?, Lee Kuan Yew of Singapore?

Allegory of the Cave narrated and animated (shorter versionm animated with models)
Allegory of the Cave narrated and animated (longer, animated with illustrations)

Republic Part Five the problem of democracy, equality, The Academy, Islamic scholars, 2 cardinal virtues : )

Republic Part Six lasting inflluence, The Laws, Whitehead, Ring of Gyges, virtue

Text[edit]

at MIT Classics (with table of contents page)

http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/republic.html

at Project Gutenberg (without table of contents page)

http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/1497

More Fun with Fibonaccis[edit]

Recall that the Plato's Simile of the Line appears to refer to the Golden Ratio, then do the math:

There are 294 pages in the Republic:

621-327=294

The Fibonacci 38 Location would be page 438.72:

294x.38=111.72
327+111.72=438.72
On page 438e the "science of the soul" passage begins (and where the "form" of the The Republic takes shape) as the three parts of the soul are distinguished and then related to the virtues of Wisdom, Courage, Temperance, and Justice.

The Fibonacci 62 Location would be page 509.28:

294x.62=182.28
327+182.28=509.28
On page 509a: We find Socrates discussing the form of the good, especially "the possession and habit of the good" (which would be what else if not the forms of virtue as found at Fib 38 above.)
At 509d "the ratio" is introduced, i.e., Plato introduces the ratio (if it is the phi of the Parthenon) precisely where the ratio would cut the text after the form of the good.

Was Plato 'Fibbing'?--gm