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Maybe It Was Dana Plato?

July 1st, 2009 · 11 Comments

Matt Continetti finds Sarah Palin quoting Plato, but notes in passing that the line is “perhaps apocryphal”:

We like to have other people participate in these activities with us because, as Plato said, “You learn more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.”

It’s been a while since I read the dialogues, and I couldn’t swear with certainty I’ve read every one, but that sure doesn’t ring any bells—and, more to the point, doesn’t really sound like the kind of thing Plato would say. The guy wrote dialogues, after all. A quick Google shows it cropping up on quotation pages, but never actually soured to a text, which makes me suspicious. Anyone?

Tags: General Philosophy · Journalism & the Media



11 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Doug // Jul 1, 2009 at 11:05 am

    You’re right, he’s an unlikely candidate for disparaging the socratic method method, but then Palin’s an unlikely candidate for quoting Plato. I propose that you can learn more reading Plato than you can seeing him quoted.

  • 2 Bill // Jul 1, 2009 at 1:37 pm

    Should we really be surprised by the revelation that Sarah Palin’s knowledge of Plato is obviously gleaned from online quotation pages?

    As Keynes once wrote, “the past is history, the future a mystery, but today is a gift. That’s why they call it the ‘present.'”

  • 3 Neil the Ethical Werewolf // Jul 1, 2009 at 1:39 pm

    Yeah, I’m feeling the apocryphal here too.

  • 4 chrismealy // Jul 1, 2009 at 1:58 pm

    Looks like it’s an old Portuguese proverb: Mais descobre huma hora de jogo, que hum anno de conversação


  • 5 Julian Sanchez // Jul 1, 2009 at 2:02 pm

    So we should attribute it to Plataõ?

  • 6 Kevin B. O'Reilly // Jul 1, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    We’re lucky she didn’t quote the lyrics to the “Diff’rent Strokes” theme song, wise though they are.

  • 7 Xavier // Jul 1, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    It is almost certainly not from Plato, but it could be a corruption of various things he says in the LAWS or the STATESMAN – where play is important as a means of “testing” character.

  • 8 Skeptic // Jul 9, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    “Corruption” being the key word in this discussion of Sarah Palin’s new pastime, misquoting General McArthur, Newt Gingrich, and Plato.

    Palin is crookeder than a corkscrew pasta.

  • 9 Brad Johnson // Jul 10, 2009 at 8:18 am

    It turns out the quotation is actually from A Letter of Advice to a Young Gentleman Leaving the University Concerning His Behaviour and Conversation in the World, a 1670 etiquette guide, wherein it explains that that the true measure of a “man’s disposition” can be found by gambling against him: “If you would read a man’s Disposition, see him Game, you will then learn more of him in one hour, than in seven Years Conversation, and little Wagers will try him as soon as great Stakes, for then he is off his Guard.”

  • 10 Human Trend » Matthew Continetti Provokes Nausea // Jul 11, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    […] Curse you, Julian Sanchez. […]

  • 11 reed signature piece // Dec 13, 2014 at 9:26 am

    An outstanding share! I have just forwarded this onto a co-worker who had been conducting a little homework on this.

    And he actually bought me breakfast due to the fact
    that I discovered it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this….

    Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending time to discuss this
    topic here on your blog.

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