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Performing Citizenship in Plato's Laws

$108.00 (C)

Part of Cambridge Classical Studies

  • Date Published: November 2014
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107072886

$ 108.00 (C)

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About the Authors
  • In the Laws, Plato theorizes citizenship as simultaneously a political, ethical, and aesthetic practice. His reflection on citizenship finds its roots in a descriptive psychology of human experience, with sentience and, above all, volition seen as the primary targets of a lifelong training in the values of citizenship. In the city of Magnesia described in the Laws erôs for civic virtue is presented as a motivational resource not only within the reach of the 'ordinary' citizen, but also factored by default into its educational system. Supporting a vision of 'perfect citizenship' based on an internalized obedience to the laws, and persuading the entire polity to consent willingly to it, requires an ideology that must be rhetorically all-inclusive. In this city 'ordinary' citizenship itself will be troped as a performative action: Magnesia's choral performances become a fundamental channel for shaping, feeling and communicating a strong sense of civic identity and unity.

    • Adopts an interdisciplinary approach which will appeal to ancient philosophers and scholars of ancient Greek literature and cultural history, and more broadly to those interested in political thought and citizenship studies
    • Explores the rhetoric of citizenship rather than statesmanship in the Laws
    • Unravels how Magnesia's communicative strategies are deeply indebted to the social and religious fabric of the classical Greek polis, thereby enabling Plato's last reflection on citizenship to be situated against the varied discourses on, and practices of, citizenship of the fourth century BC
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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2014
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107072886
    • length: 281 pages
    • dimensions: 224 x 145 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Performing Ordinary Virtue in Plato's Utopias: Citizenship, Desire and Intention:
    1. Citizenship in Callipolis
    2. Citizenship in Magnesia
    Part II. Citizenship and Performance in the Laws:
    3. Choral performances, persuasion and pleasure
    4. Patterns of chorality in Magnesia
    5. Comedy and comic discourse in Magnesia
    6. Epilogue: on law, agency and motivation.

  • Author

    Lucia Prauscello, University of Cambridge
    Lucia Prauscello is University Senior Lecturer in Classics at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Trinity Hall. She has published on Greek philology, literature and music. Her monograph Singing Alexandria: Music between Practice and Textual Transmission was published in 2006.

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