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3.87  ·  Rating Details  ·  5,035 Ratings  ·  158 Reviews
"Taking the form of a dialogue between Socrates, Gorgias, Polus and Callicles, the Gorgias debates crucial questions about the nature of government. While the aspiring politician Callicles propounds the view that might is right, and the rhetorician Gorgias argues that oratory and the power to persuade represent 'the greatest good', Socrates insists on the duty of politicia ...more
Paperback, 338 pages
Published June 1st 1996 by Livre de Poche (first published -380)
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Riku Sayuj

A Starker Dialogue

Gorgias is very similar in structure, content, focus and argument with the Republic. In fact, it comes across almost a half-formed version of it, and scholars argue that it is in many ways like an early sketch for Republic. But unlike the Republic, which forays into metaphysics and utopias, the argument in Gorgias is anchored very much in this world, and, again in contrast to Republic where everyone seems persuaded in the end, Gorgias leaves us in the dark as to whether Socrate
Mar 02, 2008 Trevor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
Well, if one was to sum up, it would be hard to go past Plato’s own summary:

“And of all that has been said, nothing remains unshaken but the saying, that to do injustice is more to be avoided than to suffer injustice, and that the reality and not the appearance of virtue is to be followed above all things, as well in public as in private life; and that when any one has been wrong in anything, he is to be chastised, and that the next best thing to a man being just is that he should become just,
Oct 11, 2011 AC rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a masterpiece. It includes a critical text, and a line-by-line philological commentary. But even the reader without Greek will learn an enormous amount about Plato and related topics by reading it alongside a translation -- just skip all the entries dealing with purely philological matters.

It is often said that the best commentary on Aristotle is Aristotle. Hence, important commentaries on Aristotle spend most of their time quoting (in Greek) other passages from Aristotle. The same

An excellent example of philosophy justifying itself.

Everybody has heard the whole cranky, rather arrogant and patronizing remark made when someone who doesn't read very much or doesn't read for pleasure or instruction feels like scoffing a bit:

"Why are you reading this boring old stuff? Philosophy's good when you're younger, and you don't know anything, but once you become a real adult you should just let that stuff go..."

It's interesting that Socrates calls Gorgias out for basically maki
Melika Khoshnezhad
ادم فكر ميكنه از دو سه هزار سال پيش تا حالا با وجود اين همه اتفاقايي كه توي همه ي جنبه هاي زندگي ادم ها افتاده بايد طبيعت شون هم تغيير كرده باشه ولي مثل اينكه اين طور نيست و تمدن واقعا تاثيري روي ذات ادم ها نداره. گورگياس و مي خوندم و فكر مي كردم چقدر تعداد سوفيست هايي كه دور و بر خودم مي بينم زياده، چه برسه به اينكه تقريبا تمام ادم هاي بزرگي كه در راس هستند هم اگه سوفيست نبودن اونجا نبودن. ادم هايي كه مي تونن كاري كنن كه با كلمه هاي قشنگ زشت ترين دروغ به نظر مردم قشنگ ترين حقيقت ممكن به نظر بيا ...more
Gorgias is another Sophist (after Protagoras) with who Socrates interacts along with Callicles. The dialogue is interesting in its premise: Plato essentially says that morality is greatly tied with afterlife - a reward for being 'good' in this life. This is essentially the root of the argument or what Socrates tries to qualify it as one while Callicles comes after him viciously.

While Protagoras retires from the argument (which goes nowhere), Gorgias simply doesn't participate. Gorgias being the
David Sarkies
Jun 14, 2014 David Sarkies rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Philosophers & Christians
Recommended to David by: University
Shelves: philosophy
Plato on the virtuous life
7 August 2011

It is difficult to put a date of composition to such a text, though internal comments can assist us with determining when it was written. While I do not consider myself an expert on Plato, I would consider this text to be one of his earlier writings as he seems to be recording an earlier conversation as opposed to using Socrates to be a mouthpiece for his own philosophy. A lot have been written on Plato's dialogues, which tend to be philosophical discussio
Cassandra Kay Silva
I throw my token in with Callicles when he said
"By the gods, Chaerephon, I too have been present at many discussions, but I don't believe that any has ever given me so much pleasure as this. If you like to go on talking all day, you are doing me a favor".

I simply can't get enough of these dialogues! I know there are flaws in them, I know that sometimes as (especially in the one on oratory) the protagonist (Socrates) gets all the words in edgewise and our dear antagonists do not make a fun enoug
Alp Turgut
Her ne kadar zaman aşımına uğramış bir sonuca bağlansa da Platon'un "Gorgias Ya Da Retorik Üstüne" eseri iyi ile kötünün ne olduğunu derin bir şekilde inceleyen, bunu yaparken de sanatın ne olduğunu açıklamaya çalışarak okuyucunun ufkunu açmayı başaran bir kitap. Sanatı daha çok politikanın vazgeçilmez aracı retorikle yani sözle etkileme sanatı üzerinden açıklamaya çalışan kitabın günümüzde bile hala devam eden sanat tartışmalarına ön ayak olduğu bir gerçek. Buradan kitabın politikaya da el attı ...more
Aug 29, 2010 Mandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010, philosophy
I feel the need to point out that while my ISBN matches, my book only has 149 pages (as opposed to the supposed 224, according to goodreads). I dunno what I'm missing out on, but as far as I can tell my book contains all its parts.

This book makes a lot of complex arguments, and at times I found it hard to follow. There were several occasions where I had to read passages and even whole pages over again because I got lost in the arguments. I think the instances where Plato chooses to have Socrates
Jun 15, 2013 J. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gorgias is structured in three sections, each section consists of a dialectic argument in dramatic form. The main focus is rhetoric and its uses. What is rhetoric? Is the purpose of rhetoric to win an argument or get to the 'truth'?

Historical context: The 5th century saw the spread of Sophistry and the professional use of rhetoric. Law courts were public occasions, Sophists went around giving lessons in law court rhetoric with an end to instructing others on how to get power and hold onto it. R
Too old to rate. Reading this in a yellowed library book, with edges of the pages flaking off and falling into my lap as I read, Gorgias made a strong argument, more unintentionally than intentionally, for the uselessness of rhetoric. Time has turned Plato's wisdom into despotism and Socrates' humility into a shield to hide his philosophy's flaws behind. Does Plato still offer anything to teach us today, not merely as history but as genuine philosophy? A lot of what he says are certainly good po ...more
I read this twenty years ago and participated in my first weekend retreat sponsored by the Basic Program of Liberal Education of The University of Chicago. It was an exciting weekend as we sat up past midnight discussing Plato's arguments for education and the power of the sophists represented by Gorgias. As part of the weekend we watched the film, Educating Rita, and it has become one of my favorites always bringing memories of that weekend and Plato's Gorgias.
The familiar saying of Socrates is
Garrett Cash
Besides the philosophy, which has been much discussed, I also found interesting Socrates's unusual tone in this dialogue. He is much fiercer and more opinionated than in others, and the whole discussion itself seems more like a heated argument than the typical philosophical debate. Callicles even goes as far as to say Socrates is on the level of an annoying child for studying philosophy at his age.
Ahmad Sharabiani
Gorgias, Plato, Walter Hamilton (Translator), Chris Emlyn-Jones (Commentary)
Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1960=1339, In 149 Pages
Bob Nichols
Socrates goes though a mind-numbing series of overly-long questions about some issues of philosophical import. While in the Protagoras Socrates complains about long-winded statements, he states in this dialogue that a four sentence response by Polus was “a lengthy exposition.” Unlike Polus, who Socrates treats unfairly, Socrates meets his intellectual match with Callicles. Callicles is not bullied into simplistic yes or no answers to questions and to a logic that he finds difficult to follow. Ca ...more
Oct 24, 2011 Selman rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
Ben hakikaten sevmiyorum bu Platon'u ya. Gorgias'ı tekrar okuyunca tekrar farkettim. Şimdi kitap elimde değil, zaten sağlıklı analizler yapacak halim ve iştiyakım da yok ama özetle şöyle söyleyebilirim: Platon, Sokrates'in tartışmayı sanki son derece sistematik ve kullandığı kavramların her birini açık seçik tanımlayarak yürüttüğü gibi bir izlenim vermeye çalışıyor ve fakat aslında durum hiç de öyle değil.

Platon, Sokrates'in muhataplarını kendilerini bir şey sanan avanaklar gibi gösterip duruyor
Osas Aghaku
Mar 21, 2014 Osas Aghaku rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I remember reading this a few years ago, but somehow I decided to rent and read it again and I have to say that I'm so freaking happy that I did. Now that I'm older and perhaps a little bit more mature, I now can digest the content and wisdom Gorgias (the book itself, duuuh) has to offer and I even enjoyed it more than I did back then. In the whole dialogue it's seems to me that it's pretty clear where I find myself, and sure some arguments took thinking as you go on(how could it not?), but it w ...more
Jason Kirk
Feb 19, 2014 Jason Kirk rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you've never read Plato, start with Gorgias . This extended dialogue lays out many of the foundational principles of democracy (and Socrates' fiercest critiques of its Athenian implementation) and its arguments maintain their relevance today, even as the democratic ideal lists ever more drunkenly toward a capitalist bastardization that suppresses more and more citizens, not least in these United States. Walter Hamilton's canonical English translation serves the material well, rendering among ...more
Luke Thomas
Apr 17, 2016 Luke Thomas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This ought to be mandatory reading for any political animal (voting or voted for). Plato reveals not only the required nature for a political structure, populous and statesman but for the end of the human soul as well. This is an absolute must.
Dounia Elbouzidi
May 19, 2016 Dounia Elbouzidi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
أنا أفضل أن أستخدم قيثارة غير متوافقة الاوتار وكلها نشاز، أو أن أكون رئيساً لفرقة مغنين غير منتظمين، أو أن أجد نفسي غير متفق ومعارض لجميع الناس، عن أن أكون مختلفاً مع نفسي وحدها ومعارضاً لها.
Feb 04, 2016 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book could really be called "The Gospel according to Socrates." What a fantastic, inspiring, enlightening book. My bottom-line takeaway from this book is happiness = justice + self control. Justice means always putting your soul first. If you do wrong, then for the sake of your soul make it right. If you must be punished then for the sake of your soul, take your punishment and allow it to remove the evil from your soul. In the same way, put other people's souls first as well. Tell the truth ...more
Feb 27, 2015 Jeff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
Socrates at his finest.
Odi Shonga
Oct 13, 2014 Odi Shonga rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not going to speak about the philosophy in this, partially because I'm terribly lazy and partially because I don't really think goodreads is the forum for that. There are many things in it if you're into ancient ethics: what is the greatest good (pleasure? power? justice?), what role does knowledge play in virtue/ethics, whether people ever truly desire bad, that kinda thing; it's also always fun to watch battle be done between the sophist/rhetorician and the philosopher. I'm sure there's a ...more
Feb 24, 2016 Tony rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
GORGIAS. (405 B.C.) Plato. ***.
The subtitle of this work was “Concerning Oratory.” “…the true concern of the Gorgias is with ethics, and its scope cannot be better indicated than by a quotation from Socrates’ concluding words: “All the other theories put forward in our long conversation have been refuted, and this conclusion alone stands firm, that one should avoid wrong-doing with more care than being wronged, and that the supreme object of a man’s efforts, in public and private life, must be t
Jul 24, 2015 Lukerik rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A little note light compared to more recent penguin editions of this sort of thing, but a fair trade off for the quality of the translation. Clearly written and does well at bringing out the speakers' tone. Socrates is in fine fettle in this dialogue, angry and sarcastic, and you can see how annoying he must have been. There's some really nice stuff relating to his death in the argument with Callicles, but that with Polus is the stand out argument for me. The idea that it's better to suffer wron ...more
Sep 18, 2009 Leif rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
What can I say about Plato that hasn't already been said: either here, or by the editor of my edition, who was generous enough to point out all the flaws in Socrates' arguments. I read this for its discussion of rhetoric, and came away somewhat enlightened, stimulated, and angry. If that helps.
Robert Palmer
May 03, 2014 Robert Palmer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Trial lawyers and public speakers
Shelves: philosophy

I am a trial lawyer, and what this ancient dialogue has to say strikes home, for it is concerned with the proper and improper use of rhetoric. Today the term, "rhetoric," has a pejorative connotation, but in its purest sense, it simply refers to means of persuasion. The very word itself has Greek origins and is derived from the Greek word, ῥητορικός (“rhētorikos”), which literally means “concerning public speech.” That word, in turn, is derived from the Greek word, ῥήτωρ (“rhētōr”), which m
Mar 28, 2016 Algernon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
Why oh why does Goodreads insist on treating different translations of classical works as if they were the same book? I am writing in review of the Oxford University Press edition translated by Robin Waterfield, with good notes and an index of the figures named in the dialogue. Yet I am seeing this review appended to other editions of the book, which I've seen Goodreads do with other translated works.

Anyway, Socrates confronts Gorgias about rhetoric, whether rhetoric alone can serve a virtuous
Jan 04, 2016 Lori rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found the character of Socrates rather annoying in this discourse. I disliked some of the reasoning. At one point, it is basically argued that if sickness is evil and health is good, and you can't have sickness and health at the same time, then you can't have evil and good at the same time. Arguments also repeatedly depend on the premise that no man does evil on purpose, just because no one is willing to say out loud that sometimes people knowingly do bad things. I know this is a work of its t ...more
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Politics: Gorgias 1 5 Oct 21, 2013 10:14AM  
  • The Athenian Constitution
  • The First Philosophers: The Presocratics and Sophists
  • On Duties (Cambridge Texts in the History of Political Thought)
  • Proslogion
  • The Metaphysics of Morals (Texts in the History of Philosophy)
  • Philosophical Fragments (Writings, Vol 7)
  • Early Greek Philosophy
  • Four Texts on Socrates: Euthyphro/Apology/Crito/Aristophanes' Clouds
  • Herakles
  • Eumenides (Ορέστεια, #3)
  • Philoctetes
  • On the Motion of the Heart and Blood in Animals
  • Fragments
  • Rules for the Direction of the Mind
(Greek: Πλάτων) (Arabic: أفلاطون)
Plato is a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the foundations of Western philosophy and science.

Plato is one of the most
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“If it were necessary either to do wrong or to suffer it, I should choose to suffer rather than do it.” 13 likes
“for philosophy, Socrates, if pursued in moderation and at the proper age, is an elegant accomplishment, but too much philosophy is the ruin of human life.” 5 likes
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