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Full Access Plato’s The Republic, Book XI Editorial Introduction

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Plato’s The Republic, Book XI Editorial Introduction

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Abstract In this newly edited Book XI of Plato’s Republic, to be considered as the authentic conclusion of the dialogue, Socrates meets a Stranger from Trier, and discusses with him the questions of social reform, power and future revolutions.

1. FN11. Plato und Karl Marx, ‘Zukunftphilologie’, 0, 1943, pp. 1–103. Derselbe maintains that the Stranger should be identified with a certain Karolus Marx, who is mentioned in the Chronacæ Trevirienses by Scribonius Strictus.
2. FN22. A Communist Fiction: The So-Called Book XI of the Republic, ‘Anoia’ 99, 2004, pp. 1–2.
3. FN33. An epistolary exchange between the two individuals is attested to and collected in MAGA (Marx und Anghelos Gesammelte Werke), vol. XXX. Giuseppe Mucca, Marx pseudoepigraphus, in ‘Quaderni histerici’ 13, 1913, pp. 13–31, however, regards the correspondence as a forgery (as well as the actual existence of Marx and Anghelos).
4. FN44. Cf. on this question S. Pastaldi-Gambese, Bendidie, in M. Vecchietti (ed.) Platone. Repubblica, libro 1, Francopolis, Napoli 1998, pp. 6372–7277.
5. FN55. Cf. R. Godéus, Pourquoi Platon a-t-il compose les Lois?, ‘Revue phantastique de Philosophie’, 99, 1999, pp. 9–90.
6. FN66. Cf., with regard to this, F. Testarotta, Mentexis, Scuola normale [sic!] Superiore, 2002, pp. 613–890.
7. FN77. On this theme, see the important contribution by L. Naftalina, Comunismo o élitismo?, in ‘Quinterni di Storia’ 2, 2002, p. 2.
8. FN88. This thesis argued by the Stranger may be traced back to the influence of the Scythe Vladimiros Leninos, better known under the pseudonyms Abaris or Anakarsis.
9. FN99. On the relationship between the Treviranus and the Rhenish wise man, see the fundamental contribution by D. Lomuto, The Book of Truths that Are Incontrovertible and Irrefutable Even by the Most Pernicious Critics, Coricella, Ischia s.d.
10. FN1010. This passage shows how Plato was aware of the objections formulated in his own school against the partial ‘communism’ theorised in the Republic, objections that were communicated abroad by some of his disciples, as demonstrated by the Cretan reference mentioned by the Stranger. According to M. Vecchietti, the leader of this opposition was the Pythagorean conservative Philip of Opus, well-known for his theocratic leanings; the very composition of the Laws should be attributed to him, as in that text the Platonic thesis of a collectivism that could potentially be extended to all citizens is mentioned only to be discarded. Allegedly Philip was also close to Aristotle, who not by chance considered the Laws much more preferable to the Republic. On the whole question, see M. Vecchietti, Unwritten and Extravagant Pages, Levanto s.d.
11. FN1111. A critical analysis of this myth is formulated by G. Blush and T. Bliar, Ghost-stories and Ghost-busters, Hollywood-Baghdad 2004. Lively replies to these critiques have been recently discussed in an international forum hosted in a clandestine location (I want to express my gratitude to the organisers, with regard to whose identity I am bound to maintain silence, for having confidentially sent me the Proceedings of the meeting).

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Affiliations: 1: University of Pavia


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