Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Plato's Phaedrus. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
Phaedrus: Plot Summary
Phaedrus: Detailed Summary & Analysis
Phaedrus: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Plato
Historical Context of Phaedrus
Other Books Related to Phaedrus
- Full Title: Phaedrus
- When Written: 380s-370s B.C.
- Where Written: Athens, Greece
- When Published: 380s-370s B.C.
- Literary Period: Classical Greek
- Genre: Platonic dialogue
- Setting: c. 418-416 B.C., outside the city of Athens, along the banks of the Ilissus River
- Climax: Socrates’s second speech on love and the soul
- Antagonist: Lysias (and poor speakers/writers in general)
- Point of View: Third person
Extra Credit for Phaedrus
Phaedrus on Love. Phaedrus also appears as a character in The Symposium—again as a young, enthusiastic student of rhetoric—offering a brief and relatively unsophisticated speech in praise of the god Love amidst a roomful of Athens’ cultural giants.
“Phaedrus” on Zen. A character called Phaedrus, named after this text, appears in Robert Pirsig’s 1974 novel, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. The narrator applies the name Phaedrus to the consciousness that occupied his body before he experienced a psychotic break while studying ancient philosophy at the University of Chicago.