Particular Plato

My discussions over sex and child-rearing in Plato were less than satisfactory; I could not keep together the disparate elements and form them into coherent discussions. Plato’s jumps from new ways of marriage to child-rearing practices to the use of sex to motivate soldiers to the culture of hero-worship to the treatment of Greek captives and corpses in war to the control of the community’s population levels outjumped me, and we lacked a center the last couple days.

When I go in Friday, I’m going to emphasize that with those discussions, we get Plato actually working out in detail the theory that he took so long to set up beforehand and that we as readers must engage the general theory even if the particulars fall short. I pointed to that with an exercise I had the students do (they were to formulate a thesis that critiques Plato’s general project), but I never explicitly stated it.

Midterms are still kicking my butt. The Latin and Old English exams are out of the way, but I still have several pages to write on my Spenser paper, and I’ve only marked up a third or so of my freshmen’s papers. I’ve still miles to go before I sleep.

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