How Joseph De Maistre Read Plato’s Laws

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Maistre’s Soirées de Saint-Pétersbourg is modeled on Plato’s Laws. Plato
and Maistre both demand the political control of natural inquiry, and implement these
controls through theodictic conversation. Maistre, following the lead of Plato’s legislator, publishes an exemplary conversation about providence between a young man
tempted by an atheistic Enlightenment and two older, wiser, and more learned men of
affairs. Maistre defends providentialism from materialist interpretations of natural science even as Plato defended it from ancient materialism
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-43
Number of pages15
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2002


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