Scepticism or Platonism?: The Philosophy of the Fourth Academy, by Harold Tarrant
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- ISBN: 9780521035774 | 0521035775
- Cover: Paperback
- Copyright: 10/29/2007
In the first half of the first century BC the Academy of Athens broke up in disarray. From the wreckage of the semi-sceptical school there arose the new dogmatic philosophy of Antiochus, synthesized from Stoicism and Platonism, and the hardline Pyrrhonist scepticism of Aenesidemus. With his extensive knowledge of the ways in which Plato was read and invoked as an authority in late antiquity Dr Tarrant builds a most impressive reconstruction of Philo of Larissa's brand of Platonism and of its arrival in Middle Platonism, particularly that of Plutarch, long after the Academy's institutional demise. Particularly valuable is his exploitation for this purpose of a text barely discussed since its publication 80 years ago - a commentary on Plato's Theaetetus whose unidentified author Dr Tarrant has cogently argued to be a follower of Philo. Among many other achievements, Dr Tarrant throws much light on the relation of Aenesideman scepticism to the Academy.