In an age when philosophy is more about refutation and intellectual games than artfully crafted public discourse, Kreeft's return to a more traditional form of expression—the philosophical dialogue—is immensely refreshing. In The Unaborted Socrates he transports Socrates to modern-day Athens where he takes on a doctor, a psychologist and a philosopher in a debate about abortion which is at times funny, at times heartbreaking, and always poignant and compelling.
The book is divided into three dialogues, one for each of Socrates' opponents, so each argument is easy to follow. Kreeft manages to imitate Plato's style and method to a startling degree, drawing out the fallacies in the secular prochoice arguments and replacing them with logically sound prolife constructs. At the same time, he adequately represents the prochoice stance, avoiding the pitfalls of ad hominem arguments or misleading information so that his refutations are fair and foundational.
While prochoice readers would find plenty of food for thought here, this volume is probably best used as a preparatory tool for prolife debaters wanting to strengthen their position and have a strategy in place for engaging the opposition. This is a pretty hard-hitting read—while Kreeft is clearly compassionate (this is especially evident in his remarkable Three Approaches to Abortion), he doesn't shy away from the harsh realities of what the abortion debate entails or soften his own position. Especially useful as a text to introduce the philosophical elements of the abortion debate The Unaborted Socrates is one of the most well-reasoned books from the prolife position.
Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here.
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