We are what we eat -- but are we also what we read? From Socrates' proposal to expel poetry from his ideal city to modern controversies over banned books, political thinkers and citizens alike have worried about the effects of what we read. In this lecture, we consider the importance of literature in shaping individual moral character and political order.
- Plato, The Republic
o Recommended translation: Allan Bloom (Basic Books)
o Benjamin Jowett’s translation available online at Internet Classics Archive: classics.mit.edu/Plato/republic.html
- Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France
o Available online at Liberty Fund’s Online Library of Liberty: oll.libertyfund.org/titles/burke-select-works-of-edmund-burke-vol-2
o Contact me for recommended excerpts!
- Jeremias Gotthelf, The Black Spider
o Translation by Susan Bernofsky (NYRB Classics, 2013)
- William Shakespeare, King Lear
o Available in many inexpensive editions
o Also online through MIT, Compete Works of William Shakespeare: shakespeare.mit.edu/lear/full.html
Contact me: Peter Meilaender (firstname.lastname@example.org)