13 November 2017 Start
13 November 2017 End
7.30 p.m. Time
Greece National Hellenic Research Foundation, Auditorium “Leonidas Zervas”, 48, Vasileios Constantinou Av., Athens

e-mail.: [email protected]

Democracy, Demagoguery and Plato

Monday, November 13, 2017

Angie Hobbs (Professor of the Public Understanding of Philosophy (University of Sheffield) will address the topic “Democracy, Demagoguery and Plato”.


In the past few years various groups with opposing aims in a number of countries have claimed that they are the champions of democracy, “rule by the people”, and there is huge confusion and disagreement about who are “the people” and what really constitutes their “rule”.

In this talk Angie Hobbs argues that Plato, despite the fact that his experience was of direct democracy and not the liberal representational democracy that emerged in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, can be of great assistance in helping us think through these issues: although he is no fan of (direct) democracy, his analysis of its charms and weaknesses is nevertheless illuminating and his account of how democracy can be subverted into a far worse tyranny by a cynical and opportunistic demagogue is devastating. Plato also helps us understand what is really involved in “rule” based on reason and evidence, and what kind of political, social and educational conditions are necessary to achieve it.