By Jacob Klein
The Meno, probably the most greatly learn of the Platonic dialogues, is obvious afresh during this unique interpretation that explores the discussion as a theatrical presentation. simply as Socrates's listeners could have wondered and tested their very own considering according to the presentation, so, Klein exhibits, may still glossy readers get involved within the drama of the discussion. Klein bargains a line-by-line observation at the textual content of the Meno itself that animates the characters and dialog and thoroughly probes every one major flip of the argument.
Originally released in 1965.
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Additional info for A Commentary on Plato's Meno
Cf. Thompson, p. 69 ( 1 9 ) . " T h i s almost literal translation omits the puns contained in the first sentence a n d does not d o justice to the special paratactic character of the second. T h e literal assertion in the phrase: Ou pany eimi mnemon, I have not the best of memories, is, no doubt, a p a r t of Socrates' ironic "code," 2 6 as Alcibiades, for one, in the Protagoras27 well knows. But in the texture (and sound) of the fuller phrase: ou pany eimi mnemon, δ Menon, there seems to be embedded more than one p u n and more than one p e r t i n e n t connotation.
T h e confirmation of Socrates' belief would require, however, the closing of a gap in the argument. It would be necessary to show that knowledge of knowledge and of ignorance is inseparable from knowledge of what is good and what is evil. It is not Critias alone who would be hard pressed to plug this gap. In this same connection, Socrates finds occasion to remark (175 c 3-7) that, notwithstanding all the difficulties which Critias' logos presents, his and Critias' "generous" concession in the face of its paramount difficulty amounts to agreeing to the possibility of knowing, in some way or other (άμώ$ 7 1 TTUS) , that which one knows one does not know.
Public figure10 at the beginning of the fourth century, a "Thessalian Alcibiades," in Jowett's phrase. 1 1 Fame, b e it of a glorious or an infamous kind, does not need—especially at that time in Greece—the channel of the written word to r u n its course. T h e r e can hardly be any d o u b t that Meno's image as that of an archvillain was fixed in the minds of Plato's contemporaries, regardless of w h e t h e r this image did or did n o t do justice to the "real" Mcno. A n d we, on o u r part, can hardly escape the impact of Xenophon's description of that peculiarly gifted man.
A Commentary on Plato's Meno by Jacob Klein