Famous Last Words: Life, Death, and Disease of Socrates @ Reed College

+ Lecture at Reed College. 

Socrates’s last words in Plato’s Phaedo have puzzled commentators since antiquity. A great deal of Plato’s philosophical legacy hinges on how we interpret his version of Socrates’s deathbed command: “We owe a cock to Asclepius, Crito; pay the debt and do not neglect it!” Do these enigmatic words contain a repudiation of embodied life, or do they provide guidance on how to live? In this talk, Chiara Ricciardone offers a fresh interpretation of the final scene of Phaedo that brings out its philosophical significance, literary subtlety, and relevance to how we live our lives today.