© 1995

Agora, Academy, and the Conduct of Philosophy


Part of the Philosophical Studies Series book series (PSSP, volume 63)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xix
  2. A Metaphilosophical Task

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Debra Nails
      Pages 3-7
    3. Debra Nails
      Pages 8-31
    4. Debra Nails
      Pages 32-50
  3. The Developmental Hypothesis

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 51-51
    2. Debra Nails
      Pages 69-96
    3. Debra Nails
      Pages 97-114
  4. Havelock’ Hypothesis: Plato Overturns the Oral Tradition

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 137-137
    2. Debra Nails
      Pages 139-157
    3. Debra Nails
      Pages 158-178
  5. The Conduct of Philosophy

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 193-193
    2. Debra Nails
      Pages 195-212
    3. Debra Nails
      Pages 213-235
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 237-267

About this book


Agora, Academy, and the Conduct of Philosophy offers extremely careful and detailed criticisms of some of the most important assumptions scholars have brought to bear in beginning the process of (Platonic) interpretation. It goes on to offer a new way to group the dialogues, based on important facts in the lives and philosophical practices of Socrates - the main speaker in most of Plato's dialogues - and of Plato himself. Both sides of Debra Nails's arguments deserve close attention: the negative side, which exposes a great deal of diversity in a field that often claims to have achieved a consensus; and the positive side, which insists that we must attend to what we know of these philosophers' lives and practices, if we are to make a serious attempt to understand why Plato wrote the way he did, and why his writings seem to depict different philosophies and even different approaches to philosophizing.
From the Preface by Nicholas D. Smith.


Plato Socrates bibliography dialogue interpret literacy philosophy tradition writing

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Mary Washington CollegeFredericksburgUSA

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Agora, Academy, and the Conduct of Philosophy
  • Authors Debra Nails
  • Series Title Philosophical Studies Series
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Kluwer Academic Publishers 1995
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-0-7923-3543-6
  • Softcover ISBN 978-94-010-4068-6
  • eBook ISBN 978-94-011-0151-6
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XIX, 267
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Classical Philosophy
    Classical Studies
    History, general
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


` Nails offers us a challenging and useful book.'
Anciet Philosophy 19 (1999)