Perusing an old paper copy of A. E. Taylor's Plato, the Man and his Works, I found the following blurb on the back cover:
Professor Taylor, an almost ideal interpreter of Plato, has a mind that is spiritual, supple, and critical; an outlook on humanity which never neglects the findings of psychology and the witness of history; a vision which looks perpetually through philosophy towards realities which philosophy seeks...The book, which in arrangement is a detailed commentary on the whole of the Platonic writings, is therefore in fact far more than this. It will pilot the least experienced traveller through a great region of the spiritual life of man.Taylor's book is undoubtedly a great book of introduction to Plato; and Underhill is undoubtedly correct in saying that Plato is 'spiritual'--or, at least, the tendency of nearly all readers in history has been to receive him in that way.
--Evelyn Underhill, The Spectator
But then this reflection suggested to me the following argument. What, if anything, is wrong with it?
1. Plato is a 'spiritual' philosopher.By 'contemporary interpreters' I mean analytic, Straussian, and continental. The concern would be that, for all the obvious merits of writings about Plato in our generation, there is something fundamentally wrong in how we construe him. Plato is 'spiritual', and yet we do not read him as 'spiritual'. To wit: it would be absurd to hand a volume of contemporary Platonic studies to anyone as a guide to the 'great region of the spiritual life of man'.
2. Contemporary interpreters do not interpret him as 'spiritual'.
3. Thus, contemporary interpreters of Plato interpret him incorrectly.
What do you say?