The reason I haven’t been blogging is I’m in the depths and throes of book-making. We’re finally – finally! – bringing out a new edition of good old Reason and Persuasion (that’s Belle’s and my old Plato book. I’ve swept clean the old site to celebrate the new book. All we need to complete the celebration is: the new book.) The problem is that it’s literally impossible to proof a book. Typos. They go all the way down. No matter how many times you comb through, there are more. And then more, underneath that. I’m convinced every book manuscript contains an infinite number of – admittedly increasingly small – typographical errors. It’s Zenoesque.
But you don’t care about that. You need entertainment. So here’s something I went overboard with, a while back. With Plato, I take a self-improvement/self-help angle. There’s a lot about Dale Carnegie and the sophists in the book. So I thought it would be funny to do an illustration for the Republic/Trasymachus section that plays that up. What is Thrasymachus going for, advocating ‘justice is the advantage of the stronger’ as a kind of self-help, self-improvement doctrine? G.K. Chesterton: “Preaching egoism is practicing altruism.” What is Socrates supposed to get out of it, in Thrasymachus’ dream of philosophical victory? Anyway, I had an idea. (Click for larger.)
It was actually kind of hard to draw, although the original (I trust you recognize the classic to which I nod) is hilariously crude.
Our new edition of Reason and Persuasion should be out soon. I’ll announce that when it happens. (We’re self-publishing it. We got the rights back from the publisher after the last edition went out of print. Now pardon me while I go pick typo nits and get the Kindle version made. That one is going to be a pain.)