Author: Radcliffe Edmonds
Source: Transactions of the American Philological Association, vol. 150 no. 1, 2020, p. 65-83. Project MUSE, doi:10.1353/apa.2020.0006.
Publication type: Article in a Periodical
Abstract: Plato uses word plays in the Phaedo as a literary technique with a double purpose: to illustrate the process of recollection that moves from the sensible particulars to the intelligible ideas and to remind his readers of the ideas discussed in the dialogue, spurring their recollective associations of unseen Forms, absence of pleasure and pain, and the absence of fear, with the traditional name of Hades. The swan song of philosophy is therefore revealed to be not a nightingale's lament but rather an incantation against fear of death, a reminder of the true reality of the unseen intelligible world.