Emily Wilson is Professor of Classical Studies, University of Pennsylvania. She is the translator of The Odyssey and author of Mocked with Death: Tragic Overliving from Sophocles to Milton.
As imagined by Wilson, The Death of Socrates is therefore
very much a story about a life of becoming that compels us,
centuries later, to follow the example of Socrates, a philosopher
who managed to be mythic and reflective and irritating in almost
equal measure.--Larry T. Shillock"Bloomsbury Review"
Emily Wilson's The Death of Socrates is an exceptionally lucid introduction to this famous trial and death...Not only does Ms. Wilson carefully reconstruct the circumstances of the philosopher's demise but she also asks, rather refreshingly, the implicitly obvious but mostly overlooked question of "why the death of Socrates has mattered so much, over such an enormously long period of time and to so many different people." The history of the interpretation of Socrates' death, it turns out, is in large part the history of philosophy itself...The man who has been condemned to death for corrupting the sons of the city ends by instructing his executioners about how to raise his own. He goes to his death without the comfort of a Christian afterlife or any promise of a posthumous reputation, but only with faith in his own reason. After 2,400 years, it's still a resounding epitaph.-- (11/24/2007)