Philosophy Plays: A Neo-Socratic Way of Performing Public Philosophy
Spence, Edward H
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This paper provides an explanatory rationale within a theoretical framework for the Philosophy Plays project. The object of the Philosophy Plays is to introduce philosophy, and especially Western Philosophy, to the general public through philosophical presentations by professional philosophers incorporating drama. They have created a public domain for philosophy where relevant issues and topics of public interest and importance, such as love, immortality, happiness, friendship, religion, knowledge, trust, pets, morality and corruption, can be presented by professional philosophers and discussed in an open forum with members of the general public. The Philosophy Plays, like Platonic dialogues, seek to engage their audiences both intellectually (primarily through the philosophical talk) and emotionally (primarily through the drama). So like Plato’s dialogues, from which they draw their inspiration, the Philosophy Plays which combine dialectic (the philosophical talk) with rhetoric (the drama) seek to engage their public audiences in a realistic and shared lived experience thus rendering philosophy a practical and meaningful activity for all participants.