John Palmer presents a new and original account of Plato's uses and understanding of his most important Presocratic predecessor, Parmenides. Adopting an innovative approach to the appraisal of intellectual influence, Palmer first explores the Eleatic underpinnings of central elements in Plato's middle-period epistemology and metaphysics. He then shows how in the later dialogues Plato confronts various sophistic appropriations of Parmenides while simultaneously
developing his own deepened understanding. Along the way Palmer gives fresh readings of Parmenides' poem in the light of the Platonic reception, and discusses Plato's view of Parmenides' relation to such key figures as Xenophanes, Zeno, and Gorgias. By tracing connections among the uses of Parmenides
over the course of several dialogues, Palmer both demonstrates his fundamental importance to the development of Plato's thought and furthers understanding of central problems in Plato's own philosophy.
`This book deals with an important and interesting topic in Platonic scholarship, one certainly worthy of consideration. Palmer offers some valuable insights into Plato's understanding of Parmenides'
MIND, Vol.110, No.439
`Palmer presents detailed and convincing readings of some of the most difficult passages in the Platonic corpus.'
Owen Goldin, BMCR 01/02/05.
`Palmer has found a new angle from which to tell the story of the development of the metaphysics of the later dialogues. His analyses of Plato's arguments are careful and sober, and his tracing of their antecedents in Plato's reading of Parmenides is innovative and valuable.'
Owen Goldin, BMCR 01/02/05.
a challenging and interesting book ... every serious student of ancient philosophy will want to read it. Heythrop Jnl. Jan 01, Vol.42, No.1.
`This is a learned book and there is much that is both new and valuable. The discussion of the sight-lovers of Republic 5 ... is very good, and the accounts of Gorgia's influence on the arguments of the Parmenides and the Sophist are particularly insightful. Palmer has read widely and critically, and he engages with much modern and contemporary scholarship.'
Patricia Curd, The Classical Review, 2000.
`This excellent and extensive survey is valuable reading for scholars and graduate students interested in Plato s metaphysics and epistemology.'
N. D. Smith, Choice, Vol.37. No.11/12.
`the book makes a number of controversial suggestions on how particular passages in Parmenides could have been taken by Plato, as well as on how particular passages in Plato should be taken by us.'
David Bostock, THES, 8 October 1999
PART I: PLATO'S MIDDLE-PERIOD RECEPTION OF PARMENIDES: 1. Introduction; 2. Eschatology and epistemology; 3. The argument from the possibility of knowledge; 4. Sight-lovers, mortals, and doxa; PART II: PLATO AND THE SOPHISTIC APPROPRIATIONS OF PARMENIDES: 5. Parmenides' thesis at issue; 6. Sophistic Parmenideanism in the Sophist; 7. Sophistic Parmenideanism in the Sophist and in the Parmenides' dialectical
exercise; PART III: PLATO'S PARMENIDES IN THE LATER DIALOGUES: 8. Parmenides and Xenophanes in the Sophist and Timaeus; 9. Plato's Parmenides; 10. Plato's Parmenides and the Parmenides' Second Deduction; Appendices; Bibliography; Index locorum; General index.
Number Of Pages: 312
Published: 1st March 1999
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.39 x 15.6
Weight (kg): 0.58