There are, however, some pointers. University of London Thesis, , p. Kaluscha W. Any chronological ordering of the dialogues in this latter group, that is in the group of dialogues all of which are earlier than the late six, lacks scientific justification in terms of stylometry. Thesleff p. Skemp, J. Oxford: Oxford University Press, , , pp.
Brickhouse and N. Smith, Socrates on Trial , , p. The only group in which Brandwood ordered the dialogues chronologically was the third group, that of the late six dialogues. Bruennecke, 'Kleitophon wider Sokrates', Archiv f. Geschichte d. Philosophie , vol.
Wishart and S. The implications that can be drawn from it, with due caution, are very different. Hermias, In Platonis Phaedrum Scholia , ed. Couvreur, Paris, Librairie Emile Bouillon, , p. He was trying to be true to his spirit, not to his life.
The Chronology Of Plato's Dialogues
And the chronological indications have more to do with philosophy than with ordering the dialogues. In order to pass from the world of rhetoric depicted in the fifth tetralogy Cratylus, Ion, Euthydemus, Menexenus , see my web site to that of dialectic in the sixth tetralogy, one has to overcome Parmenides. This is done in the Sophist , through the "parricide", which is the exact counterpart in the intelligible world of the trial and death of Socrates in the visible world see the parallels in the tetralogies , again in my site. But, before reaching this stage, the challenge has to be set in full light, and this is the purpose of the Parmenides.
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And to make the challenge even bigger, what a better way than to make Socrates smaller! Thus a young Socrates before a venerable Parmenides In my study of the Platonic sokratikoi logoi , I do not see Sokrates "putting forth" positive doctrines.
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Each conversation is unique, with particular settings and interlocutors, and the discussions merely "unfold" in search of whatever is the topic. You are right to some extent, and I myself many times said that Plato was not stating doctrines, but helping the reader to reach his own truth the reader's , only explosing wrong alleys and hinting at what he himself Plato thought to be the right direction. What I meant to say and I exposed myself to you criticism in trying to be short is that Parmenides was a major road block along the path Plato was trying to lead us into under the leadership of Socrates, sort of a "middle way" between the extremes of Heraclitus the friend of the earth and Parmenides the friends of forms , the later being much harder to overcome than the former I know that merely assimilating the friends of the earth to Heraclitus and the friends of forms to Parmenides is again a short cut, but I don't want to go into a detailed historical argument about that, and I simply take them as "origins" or "paradigms", of two trends of thought Plato was fighting, as I think he did, even if this is not historically one hundred percent true.
Are you saying rhetoric, dialectic, and natural philosophy are all related? What I mean, and started explaining in some of my web pages, and intend to pursue in more pages to come, is that Plato viewed Parmenides, through Zeno and his paradoxical theses, and Gorgias and his likes, as being as much at the root of the way of thinking of the contemporaries of Socrates and Plato as Heraclitus, his materialism, and his continuators such as Protagoras and some of the sophists.
This way of thinking was based on relativism and the triumph of rhetorics.
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It tended to dismiss true philosophy and dialectics as suttleties only good for kids. And this was still the view of Isocrates in Plato's time.
For that reason, I think Plato constructed his dialogues so that they oppose a "short path to education" the one Isocrates would recommend , which culminates with rhetoric, and, in the dialogues as I order them, ends with the 5th tetralogy on logos , on the Menexenus , which is an example of the kind of politics this "short path" leads to: demagogery and reuse of interchangeable speeches written by speechwriters to justify even wars in the face of parents of dead soldiers, till next one Menexenus is then the one who will "stay forever a stranger" to dialectics, hence his name.
And overcoming Parmenides' dialectic, the "tedious game" that Isocrates and his likes and Callicles as well, whose friend Andron, the one who thinks he is a man only because his name says so, was the father of an Androtion who was a pupil of Isocrates consider only fit for youngsters and thus for a "young" Socrates , is, in Plato's mind, a prerequisite to understanding true dialectic. Thus the Parmenides as the introduction to the 6th tetralogy on dialectics, to exercize the readers' mind in having him search what's wrong with it and that's why I think the use of a youngster named Aristotle to answer Parmenides is not without a twist of humor in Plato's mind, a way of telling one of his brightest student that he had not overcome this obstacle And thus the "parricide" as the last step before presenting the principles of true politics And to make the challenge even bigger, what better way that to make Socrates smaller!
You are assuming, of course, that the primary purpose of the Prm is "logical. Where did I say it was "logical"?
It is a whole way of understanding the world which is at stakes.
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