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Plato’s Dialogue Form and the Care of the Soul

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Mark Moes

Plato’s Dialogue Form and the Care of the Soul discusses how to read a Platonic dialogue and includes detailed readings of the Symposium and the Philebus. In light of recent nondogmatic and dramatic readings of Plato’s work, it argues that the dialogues depict Socrates and the other masters as practicing philosophy by extending and reinterpreting Greek medicine in a peculiar quasi-psychiatric way. This book contends that many of the dialogues are depictions of conversations between philosophers and nonphilosophers, conversations which are importantly similar to interactions between physicians and patients in Greek medical practice. The book contends that these conversations include both diagnostic and therapeutic moments, and function as quasi-psychiatric case histories presented by Plato to his readers.