Politics in Socrates' Alcibiades

A Philosophical Account of Plato’s Dialogue Alcibiades Major

  • Andre Archie

Part of the SpringerBriefs in Philosophy book series (BRIEFSPHILOSOPH)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Alcibiades Major and Its Interpretation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Andre Archie
      Pages 3-13
  3. Alcibiades Major and Women

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 33-33
    2. Andre Archie
      Pages 55-66
  4. Alcibiades Major and Political Decisions

  5. Alcibiades Major and Political Priorities

  6. Alcibiades Major and Listening Philosophically

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 101-101
    2. Andre Archie
      Pages 123-125
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 127-143

About this book


This volume provides the first full, political and philosophically rigorous account of Plato’s dialogue Alcibiades Major. The book argues that Alcibiades Major accomplishes its goal, which is to redirect Alcibiades’ political ambitions, not by arguing for specific propositions based on specific premises. The dialogue accomplishes its goal by generalizing the notion of argument to include appeals to Alcibiades’ doxastic attitudes toward his ability and knowledge to become a powerful ruler of the Greek people.

One such doxastic attitude that Alcibiades holds about himself, and one that Socrates deftly disabuses him of, is that he does not have to cultivate himself to be competitive with the local, Athenian politicians. Socrates reminds Alcibiades that his true competitors are not Athenian politicians, but rather the Spartan and Persian kings. Consequently, the psychological momentum of the dialogue is motivated by Socrates’ aim to engender the right sort of beliefs in Alcibiades. 


Alcibiades Major Alcibiades Politics Alcibiades decision theory Alcibiades methodology Alcibiades political decisions Alcibiades political listening Alcibiades priorities Alcibiades women Eudaimonia Alcibiades Plutarch’s Alcibiades Political Philosophy Plato Political Philosophy Socrates Xenophon Memorabilia

Authors and affiliations

  • Andre Archie
    • 1
  1. 1.PhilosophyColorado State UniversityFort CollinsUSA

Bibliographic information