Review of Encounters and Reflections

Vincent Renzi, Review of Encounters and ReflectionsBryn Mawr Classical Review, Nov. 31, 2003.

As editor Ronna Burger notes in her preface (p. x), the present volume is “a project that falls outside the usual categories” of scholarship. While listing him as author, it is in fact an edited transcript of interviews with Seth Benardete, late of the New York University Department of Classics, conducted during 1992 and 1993 by Burger, Michael Davis, and Robert Berman, three of his former students from the Department of Philosophy at the New School for Social Research, where Benardete had also frequently taught during his long career in New York. It falls into two major sections, each of five chapters. The first, “Encounters,” is primarily reminiscences of persons Benardete had known. It will be of interest to many classicists at least for the anecdotes concerning eminent philologists of the past. In the second half, “Reflections,” the conversations turn to discussion of Benardete’s major interpretative contributions, especially in regard to ancient philosophy, and Plato in particular.