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Plato: Symposium

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About this Course

About the Course

In this course, Dr Frisbee Sheffield (University of Cambridge) explores Plato's Symposium. We begin by providing a broad introduction to the Symposium, including the historical, social, cultural and philosophical context. After that, we go through each of the speeches in turn, focusing on three in particular –– first, in the second module, the speech of Aristophanes; then, in the third and fourth modules, the speech of Socrates; and finally, in the fifth module, the speech of Alcibiades.

About the Lecturer

Dr Frisbee Sheffield is Director of Studies in Philosophy at the University of Cambridge. She is interested in all areas of ancient philosophy, particularly ancient ethics and politics. Her research explores desire, love, and friendship, and considers their role in the good life for Plato and Aristotle.

Recent publications include co-editing the Routledge Companion to Ancient Philosophy (2013), an edition of Plato’s Symposium, with introduction and critical notes for Cambridge Texts in the History of Philosophy (2008), a monograph, Plato’s Symposium: The Ethics of Desire, Oxford University Press (2006), and a co-edited volume Plato’s Symposium: Issues in Interpretation and Reception, Harvard University Press (2006).