The musical structure of Plato's dialogues /

"J. B. Kennedy presents a radical interpretation of the dialogues of Plato. In a detailed and systematic examination of the Symposium and Euthyphro, Kennedy reveals an underlying musical structure to Plato's dialogues, one that uses symbols to encode Pythagorean doctrines. The followers of...

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Bibliographic Details
Author / Creator:Kennedy, J. B. (John Bernard), 1958-
Imprint:Durham : Acumen Publishing, 2011.
Description:xviii, 318 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.
Language:English
Subject:Plato -- Criticism and interpretation.
Plato.
Dialogi.
Rhetoric.
Allegorie.
Formfaktor.
Musik.
Rhetoric.
Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Format: Print Book
URL for this record:http://pi.lib.uchicago.edu/1001/cat/bib/8460857
Hidden Bibliographic Details
ISBN:9781844652662 (hbk.)
1844652661 (hbk.)
9781844652679 (pbk.)
184465267X (pbk.)
Notes:Includes bibliographical references (p. 297-314) and index.
Summary:"J. B. Kennedy presents a radical interpretation of the dialogues of Plato. In a detailed and systematic examination of the Symposium and Euthyphro, Kennedy reveals an underlying musical structure to Plato's dialogues, one that uses symbols to encode Pythagorean doctrines. The followers of Pythagoras famously thought that the cosmos had a hidden musical structure and that wise philosophers would be able to hear this "harmony of the spheres". Kennedy, an expert in Pythagorean mathematics and music theory, shows that Plato - thought by many of his contemporaries and followers to have been influenced by the Pythagoreans - built a similar, musical structure into his dialogues. Kennedy's careful stichometric analysis reveals that each dialogue can be divided into twelve parts, each symbolically representing the notes in a twelve-note musical scale. These passages are shown to be relatively harmonious or dissonant. Plato used, Kennedy shows, the underlying musical scale as an outline for his dialogues, with arguments and episodes populating the intervals between notes, and major concepts or turns in the argument located at notes. Kennedy's findings are shown to chime with many of Plato's ancient followers who insisted that Plato used symbols to conceal his own views within the dialogues. That modern commentators have denied this, Kennedy argues, is a legacy of the Reformation's turn towards literalism and its rejection of theological allegory. The Musical Structure of Plato's Dialogues argues for the rehabilitation of the allegorical Plato. It is a bold and ambitious book and one that will prompt much debate." --Publisher's website.