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Plato's Apology

Semester and Year SP 2018
Course Number IDSEM-UG1727
Section 001
Instructor Laura Slatkin
Days T
Time 3:30 PM - 6:10 PM
Units 2
Level U
Requirement   HUM, PREMOD


Course meets during the first seven weeks only, First Class: January 23; Last Class: March 6. Open to juniors and seniors only.


‘Corrupting the youth’ of Athens? Virtue in action? Threat to the body politic? Model citizen? Plato’s Socrates presents a conundrum for ancient and modern thought. In his brilliant dialogue, the  Apology , Plato recreates Socrates’ defense of himself at his trial in 399 BCE for (among other things) ‘corrupting the youth’ of his city. The  Apology  sits at the intersection of law, politics, philosophy, religion, erotics, and pedagogy. In this course, we read the  Apology  closely, exploring it as philosophical reflection, courtroom oratory, literary text—and as gripping drama. Supplementary readings address: intellectual milieu, historical and political context, questions of genre.


All Syllabi

Course Type

Interdisciplinary Seminars (IDSEM-UG)