Education: Socrates Socked

Every schoolboy knows that Socrates was an influential Greek educator who was condemned to drink hemlock for "corrupting" Athens' youth. For 2,300 years Socrates has been pictured, on the strength of Plato's description of him, as a highborn philosopher who lived ascetically, spent his time asking searching questions of Athenians in the market place, showed up the Greek Sophists, avoided politics and was eventually martyred by an ignorant mob for teaching his pupils idealistic notions of justice and authority.

As it must to all great men, a debunking came to Socrates this week. The...

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