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This new edition of Plato's Symposium provides beginning readers and scholars alike with a solid, reliable translation that is both faithful to the original text and accessible to contemporary readers. In addition, the volume offers a number of aids to help the reader make his or her way through this remarkable work:
- A concise introduction sets the scene, conveys the tenor of the dialogue, and introduces the reader to the main characters with a gloss on their backgrounds and a comment on their roles in the dialogue. It also provides a list of basic points for readers to keep in mind as they read the work.
- A thought-provoking interpretive essay offers reflections on the themes of the dialogue, focusing especially on the dialogue as drama.
- A select bibliography points to works, both classic and contemporary, that are especially relevant to readers of the Symposium.
- Two appendices consist of a line drawing that depicts the spacial layout and positioning of characters in the Symposium, and a chart that shows the relation of the first six speeches to number, age, parentage and the function of Eros.
"I seriously believe this will be the finest edition of the Symposium ever to appear in English. May it enlighten many students and be a very valuable addition to current scholarship in this area."
—Donald C. Lindenmuth, The Pennsylvania State University
About the Authors:
Eva Brann, Peter Kalkavage and Eric Salem are Tutors at St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland. They have translated Plato's Sophist, Phaedo and Statesman for Focus. Peter Kalkavage has also translated Plato's Timaeus, now in a second edition.