This is a student-friendly introduction to a key text in Ancient Philosophy. In many regards the dialectical counterpart of the "Republic, the Symposium" is one of the richest and most influential of the Platonic dialogues, resonating not only with Western philosophy, but also with literature art and theology. While Plato ostensibly dramatizes a humorous account of a drinking party, he presents a profoundly serious explication of Eros that challenges the limits of reason, the nature of gender, identity and narrative form. "Plato's Symposium: A Reader's Guide" presents a concise introduction to the text, offering invaluable guidance on: historical, literary and philosophical context; key themes; reading the text; reception and influence; and, further reading. "Continuum Reader's Guides" are clear, concise and accessible introductions to key texts in literature and philosophy. Each book explores the themes, context, criticism and influence of key works, providing a practical introduction to close reading, guiding students towards a thorough understanding of the text. They provide an essential, up-to-date resource, ideal for undergraduate students.
Thomas L. Cooksey is Professor of English and Philosophy at Armstrong Atlantic State University, USA. His previous publications include Masterpieces of Philosophical Literature (Greenwood Press, 2006) and Masterpieces of Non-Western World Literature (Greenwood Press, 2007).