The Philosophy of Socrates: A Collection of Online Resources and Key Quotes

Lennox Johnson Resources

This page aims to make learning about Socrates as easy as possible by bringing together the best articles, podcasts, and videos from across the internet onto one page. To get started, simply choose one of the resources listed below, or browse a selection of key quotes by Socrates at the bottom of the page.

Encyclopedia Articles

This section features articles from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy and the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. The SEP is probably the most comprehensive online philosophy resource. It features in-depth articles on a huge number of philosophical topics, however, it is aimed at an academic audience and may be too detailed and technical for beginners. The IEP is generally more beginner-friendly but is also considered to be less reliable. Wikipedia is also an option, but it is much less reliable than either of these.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Articles

This section features short articles written by professional philosophers and aimed at a general audience. These articles are ideal for anyone looking for a shorter or more beginner-friendly introduction to Socrates than the encyclopedia articles listed above.

Aeon

The Conversation

Epoché Magazine

The New York Times (The Stone)

The Guardian

Podcasts

This section features episodes from leading philosophy podcasts. These are also aimed at a general audience and are a good option for beginners who prefer audio content.

The History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps

Philosophy Bites

In Our Time

The Philosopher’s Zone

Short Videos (<30 mins)

This section features short videos aimed at beginners.

Academy of Ideas

University of Edinburgh

Lectures/Longer Videos (>30 mins)

This section features longer videos and lectures.

Course Syllabi

This section features a selection of university course syllabi. Browsing course syllabi can be a useful way to find reading recommendations.

Book Recommendations

This section features requests for book recommendations on philosophy forums. These can also be useful to browse when trying to find reading recommendations.

Books

There is only so much that you can learn using free online resources. This section features books that may be useful if you’re looking to learn more about Socrates. This list was created using the books featured in the course syllabi and forum recommendations above.

Courses

Socrates – Allan Bloom | U. Chicago

Quotes

This section features a selection of key quotes by Socrates.


The unexamined life is not worth living.

– as quoted in Plato, Apology, 28A, trans. Benjamin Jowett


He, O men, is the wisest, who, like Socrates, knows that his wisdom is in truth worth nothing.

– as quoted in Plato, Apology, 23B, trans. Benjamin Jowett


I do nothing but go about persuading you all, old and young alike, not to take thought for your persons or your properties, but first and chiefly to care about the greatest improvement of the soul. I tell you that virtue is not given by money, but that from virtue comes money and every other good of man, public as well as private.

– as quoted in Plato, Apology, 30B, trans. Benjamin Jowett


The hour of departure has arrived, and we go our ways—I to die, and you to live. Which is better God only knows.

– as quoted in Plato, Apology, 42A, trans. Benjamin Jowett


[on looking at an expensive shop] How many things I can do without!

– as quoted in Diogenes Laertius, Lives of the Eminent Philosophers, II, 25, trans. Robert Drew Hicks


No man voluntarily pursues evil, or that which he thinks to be evil. To prefer evil to good is not in human nature; and when a man is compelled to chose one of two evils, no one will choose the greater when he may have the less.

– as quoted in Plato, Protagoras, 358C, trans. W.R.M. Lamb


If you are wise, all men will be your friends and kindred, for you will be useful and good; but if you are not wise, neither father, nor mother, nor kindred; nor anyone else, will be your friends.

– as quoted in Plato, Lysis, 210B, trans. Benjamin Jowett


We ought not to retaliate or render evil for evil to anyone, whatever evil we may have suffered from him.

– as quoted in Plato, Crito, 49C, trans. Benjamin Jowett


Not life, but a good life, is to be chiefly valued

– as quoted in Plato, Crito, 48C, trans. Benjamin Jowett


To do is more disgraceful than to suffer injustice.

– as quoted in Plato, Gorgias, 489B, trans. Benjamin Jowett


The Daily Idea aims to make learning about philosophy as easy as possible by bringing together the best philosophy resources from across the internet. To get started, check out this organized collection of 400+ articles, podcasts, and videos on a wide range of philosophical topics.

If you’re looking for the easiest way to learn more about philosophy, sign up below to get a thought-provoking philosophical quote delivered to your inbox each day, along with links to relevant resources to help you learn more.

 

If you’d rather dive right in and start reading classic works of philosophy, check out my free eBook: The Philosophy Handbook: Practical Readings and Quotations on Wisdom and the Good Life. It features short, beginner-friendly readings from some of history’s greatest philosophers, including Plato, Seneca, Bertrand Russell, and more. It’s an ideal collection for anyone looking to get started learning about philosophy.

You can also find The Daily Idea on Facebook and Twitter.