SECOND MEETING OF THE
NORTH AMERICAN SECTIONS
INTERNATIONAL PLUTARCH SOCIETY
"Plutarch's Unexpected Silences"
15-18 May, 2019
HIGHLY CUSTOMIZABLE THEME
SECOND MEETING OF THE
NORTH AMERICAN SECTIONS
INTERNATIONAL PLUTARCH SOCIETY
"Plutarch's Unexpected Silences"
15-18 May, 2019
HIGHLY CUSTOMIZABLE THEME
SECOND MEETING OF THE
NORTH AMERICAN SECTIONS
INTERNATIONAL PLUTARCH SOCIETY
"Plutarch's Unexpected Silences"
15-18 May, 2019
By Itidorfa07 (Own work) CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons (cropped from original)
Lion of Chaeronea Statue

Abstract Details

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5/16/2019  |   2:30 PM - 3:00 PM   |  Hampton Inn Conference Room

How Plutarch is the silent link between Epaminondas and Socrates in De genie Socratis

In De genio Socratis, the action and the dialogue seem completely unrelated, and Plutarch is enigmatically silent on the link between the two. On the one hand, we witness the political overthrow of the tyrants in Thebes; and on the other, we are privy to a discussion of Socrates’ daimonion and of daimonia in general. Scholars have labored over this dialogue in search of a coherent link between the political drama and the philosophical discussion. And with some penetrating insights, I dare say. But one of the main characters in the dialogue, Epaminondas, receives a wide range of assessments as statesman and as philosopher. Is he truly the heroic statesman or do his moral principles deter him from political greatness? It seems clear enough that he is not a mere statesman in the manner of the bold Charon. But does his prudence then make him a philosopher in the manner of Socrates? Was he a perfect student of Lysis? Does his character and his virtue, as shown in the dialogue, measure up to Socrates’? In my quest to give an account of both Epaminondas and the text as a whole, I shall compare the dialogue’s depictions of Epaminondas and Socrates. And how Plutarch might be the link between dialogue and action.

Bernard Boulet (Primary Presenter), bernardboulet10@gmail.com;
Bernard Boulet is currently teaching in a Great Books program at Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada. Prior to this he taught for many years at Sainte-Foy College in Quebec City. He has published books on Plato, Descartes and Machiavelli.

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