Parmenides Publishing

Titles By Mitchell H. Miller Jr.

The Philosopher in Plato's Statesman

219 pages 6 x 9
1980; 2004

This book is also available in Greek and soon to be published in Chinese.

Mitchell H. Miller Jr.

is professor of philosophy at Vassar College. He is also the author of Plato's 'Parmenides': The Conversion of the Soul.

In the Statesman, Plato brings together—only to challenge and displace—his own crowning contributions to philosophical method, political theory, and drama. In his 1980 study, reissued here, Mitchell Miller employs literary theory and conceptual analysis to expose the philosophical, political, and pedagogical conflict that is the underlying context of the dialogue, revealing that its chaotic variety of movements is actually a carefully harmonized act of realizing the mean.

The original study left one question outstanding: what specifically, in the metaphysical order of things, motivated the nameless Visitor from Elea to abandon bifurcation for his consummating non-bifurcatory division of fifteen kinds at the end of the dialogue? Miller addressed that question in a separate essay, first published in 1999 and reprinted here. In it, he opens the horizon of interpretation to include the new metaphysics of the Parmenides, the Philebus, and the "unwritten teachings."

This study demonstrates how the Statesman is the culminating expression of Plato's lifelong effort, both in Athens and in the Academy, to bring metaphysical insight to the unending political crisis of his times.

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Read the Greece & Rome review

Read the August 2005 review from Bryn Mawr Classical Review

"Miller casts considerable light on virtually every aspect of the dialogue... All in all, this book is an outstanding contribution to our understanding of the Statesman."
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—Stanley Rosen
Boston University

"THE PHILOSOPHER IN PLATO'S STATESMAN is a trail-blazing work. While not every reader will agree with the lessons Miller himself draws from this approach, none should fail to be impressed by its interpretive power. All this is exciting stuff... The interpretive pathway on which Miller has embarked has the potential for changing the face of scholarship on the late Platonic dialogues. Parmenides [Publishing] is to be commended for making these two important contributions available under a single cover."
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—Kenneth Sayre
University of Notre Dame