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The End of Plato’s Phaedo and the End(s) of Philosophy

Daniel Werner
Published Online: 2019-06-07 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2018-0055


The ending of the Phaedo is one of the most powerful and memorable moments in the entire Platonic corpus. It is not simply the end of a single dialogue, but a depiction of the end of the life of the man (Socrates) who is a looming presence in nearly everything that Plato wrote. In this article I offer an in-depth analysis of the final scene of the Phaedo. I argue that Plato very carefully constructs the scene for the sake of specific philosophical, dramatic, and political ends. Plato uses it to unify the Phaedo as a singular text, while also provoking us to reflect on the nature of our lives, our deaths, and the possibilities and limits of philosophy itself.

Keywords: plato; phaedo; socrates


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About the article

Published Online: 2019-06-07

Citation Information: Apeiron, ISSN (Online) 2156-7093, ISSN (Print) 0003-6390, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2018-0055.

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