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Performance and Culture in Plato's Laws

Cambridge University Press
May 2013

This volume is dedicated to an intriguing Platonic work, the Laws. Probably the last dialogue Plato wrote, the Laws represents the philosopher's most fully developed views on many crucial questions that he had raised in earlier works. Yet it remains a largely unread and underexplored dialogue. Abounding in unique and valuable references to dance and music, customs and norms, the Laws seems to suggest a comprehensive model of culture for the entire polis – something unparalleled in Plato. This exceptionally rich discussion of cultural matters in the Laws requires the scrutiny of scholars whose expertise resides beyond the boundaries of pure philosophical inquiry. The volume offers contributions by fourteen scholars who work in the broader areas of literary, cultural, and performance studies.