In The Republic, Plato tackles the big issues of the state and the individual: how the state should be ruled, and by whom; and the way the individual should lead his life - and why. The lively quality of the dialogue can be clearly appreciated in this new translation by Tom Griffith.
What's the big idea? Socrates argues that there are reasons to believe the soul is immortal and will live on after the body’s death. This dialogue tells us how Socrates spent the last day of his life with several friends, and how he met his end. Though soon to take a fatal drink of poison, Socrates insisted on discussing the soul and tried to prove its immortality.
Plato's Crito is a dialogue between an imprisoned Socrates and Crito, a wealthy Athenian who has formulated and financed a plan for Socrates to escape and live in exile. Socrates had been put on trial and was convicted of impiety and corrupting youth, resulting in a sentence of death. In this dialogue, Crito visits Socrates in prison and explains why Socrates must escape with him to freedom. Socrates answers each of Crito's arguments, telling him why he has to remain in prison and await his fate.
What’s the big idea? To Socrates, living according to his values was more important than life itself. Plato’s Apology is in three parts: Socrates’ personal defense in his trial for impiety and corrupting the young, his plea before being sentenced, and his address to the jurors after he was condemned to death. This audiobook includes an introduction, telling who Socrates was and how he came to be on trial for his life before his fellow Athenians.
Hippias of Elis travels throughout the Greek world practicing and teaching the art of making beautiful speeches. On a rare visit to Athens, he meets Socrates, who questions him about the nature of his art. Socrates is especially curious about how Hippias would define beauty. They agree that beauty makes all beautiful things beautiful, but when Socrates presses him to say precisely what he means, Hippias is unable to deliver such a definition.
Critias is one of Plato's late dialogues and contains the story of the mighty island kingdom Atlantis and its attempt to conquer Athens, which failed due to the ordered society of the Athenians. Critias is the second of a projected trilogy of dialogues, preceded by Timaeus and followed by Hermocrates. The latter was possibly never written, and Critias was left incomplete. This edition was translated by Benjamin Jowett in 1871.