Aspasia Greatest Philosopher of Antiquity?

“In truth, though, Athens’ most important philosopher was… ASPASIA, Pericles’ 2nd wife. She wrote Pericles’ most important discourses, invented the concept of “OPEN SOCIETY”, and the so-called “SOCRATIC METHOD”.

“Like Poincaré with Einstein, she was Socrates’ teacher. However, Socrates didn’t hide his debt and admiration!…

“According to Plutarch, Aspasia’s house became THE intellectual center in Athens, attracting the most prominent writers and thinkers, including the (then baby) philosopher Socrates. Aspasia is mentioned in the writings of Plato, Aristophanes, Xenophon, inter Alia…

“Aspasia’s role in history provides a crucial hint to the understanding of the women of ancient Greece. Powerful, but hidden. Very little is known about women in her lifetime (except Socrates reveals he learned his theory of love… “Platonic Love”… from another expert woman, widely viewed as a philosopher. In “Prisoner of History: Aspasia of Miletus and Her Biographical Tradition”, Madeleine Mary Henry, Chair and Associate Professor of Classical Studies said: “To ask questions about Aspasia’s life is to ask questions about half of humanity.””

Patrice Ayme's Thoughts

What if we got the history of thought wrong? 

What if we present as very important anti-democratic plutocratic cockroaches such as Plato or Socrates, not to speak of the pro-Macedonian agent known as Aristotle?

What if we don’t even understand the concept of great idea, let alone how one gives birth to it, let alone how a society generates great idea, and most societies, none?

Ideas are more or less significant. The most significant thinker is the one who thinks the highest significance first.

The case of Aspasia and her great ideas is striking. The lack of appreciation she received is not just an attack on all women, thus humanity, but also an attack against the all-important concept of spearhead of thought. Gedankenspitze (here, I created a German word! Did even Nietzsche do that? Let all those who accused me of Germanophobia shrink back in their tint slimy holes…)

I…

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2 thoughts on “Aspasia Greatest Philosopher of Antiquity?

    • The honor is all mine. 🙂 Your thoughts on Aspasia were right in line with my own interests. It forced me to rethink the context of ancient Greece. And I appreciate anyone who can do that for me.

      It was a pleasant challenging of inherited biases. We can’t know what we don’t know until we know it, in which case we know there is further knowledge to seek. That’s a good thing.

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