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I am studying Plato's Republic, Book X.  Is the study guide you provide here more than...

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sallysal1987 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted March 21, 2012 at 6:04 PM via web

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I am studying Plato's Republic, Book X.  Is the study guide you provide here more than I need to know, as there are many books covered in the study guide?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 21, 2012 at 6:30 PM (Answer #1)

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I think that there are several questions that need to be addressed, that probably can only be addressed with your own reflection.  Initially, you might need only the notes or ideas from Book Ten.  However, Plato's arguments via Socrates are developed throughout the book.  I think that it is really difficult to simply understand what is being said in Book Ten without understanding its genesis and development in the previous books.  There is much in way of point and counterpoint, refutations offered, and common critiques debunked in the previous books.  Therefore, to fully understand the implications about art, justice, and the nature of being in the world that come out of the Tenth Book, I think that more will have to be needed in the other books.  It is for this reason that the other books' study guides are important.  To understand where Book Ten emerges or stands, it is very important to grasp them from the other books and the other ideas that come out of the previous books.  While all you might need to know is from Book Ten, I am not sure that you will be able to gain all that you can out of it unless you examine how the arguments develop and grown from the previous books.

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted March 21, 2012 at 7:04 PM (Answer #2)

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It's actually rather less, as you need to read all of Plato's Republic as well as the study guide to fully comprehend the material. As many of the ideas expressed in the Republic develop out of Plato's other works, it would be a good idea to also read works like Apology, Phaedo, Euthyphro, and Meno as well as an introductory book on Greek history.

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