Julia Annas is an internationally renowned Plato researcher who also published about Platonic Myths. In her 2011 article about Plato's Atlantis story she rightly points out that Atlantis is not what Plato aimed for. Plato's dialogues Timaeus and Critias are rather about virtue as a value in itself, not as a means to achieve anything else, neither wealth nor glory, and about the orientation of the virtuous mind considering the eternal order of the cosmos. And about the ideal state ruled by virtuous men and women, of course.
Nevertheless, Julia Annas is wrong in her opinions about Atlantis. This shall be demonstrated in the following. The deeper reaons will be discussed in the conclusion.
Julia Annas is right in expressing the thought that the core message of the Atlantis story would even be delivered if it was presented only as an invented story with a message based only on literary allegory and not on reality [p. 61]. Yet here, Julia Annas stumbles over Plato's text.
Indeed, the first suggestion of Socrates at the beginning of the Timaeus is to develop such an invented story about the ideal state, based only on the experiences of the dialogue participants, not based on a real event, and clearly pointed out to be an invention. Just as Julia Annas says. But then, there is a turn in the plot. Then, Critias comes along with a supposedly suitable real story to fulfill the task. And Socrates asserts that a real example is better than an invented example. Now, we all have to agree with Socrates that a real example is better than an invented one. Of course, the Athens-Atlantis story may still be an invention. But shall we really expect the readers of the dialogue to recognize a fiction after the dismissal of an invented story and this turn towards a real story which is indeed better than an invented story? Julia Annas (and with her many other adherents of he Atlantis invention hypothesis) is conspicuously silent about this turn at the beginning of the dialogue.
Julia Annas is also conspicuously silent about the fact that Plato's Atlantis blends perfectly into the views of geography and history of his time. This is true e.g. for the alleged age of Atlantis of 9,000 years. The 9,000 years cannot serve well as a sign of fiction since the 9,000 years fit perfectly into the (erroneous) chronological views of Plato and his time, with Egypt thought to be older than 11,000 years. – It is also true for the allegedly existing mud in front of the Straits of Gibraltar, confirmed even by Aristotle. And it is true for Plato's geological descriptions of Athens. And it is true for so many other details. Not to mention that we know for sure that many details were really believed by Plato, such as the cyclical catastrophism. This all undermines the idea of a recognizable fiction. And Julia Annas is silent about it.
Julia Annas tries to foster the modern myth of Atlantis as a land of "wonders" [p. 53]. But the numbers and sizes mentioned in the Atlantis story are not bigger than the biggest buildings, armies, etc. in the Histories of Herodotus, including the number of years, as we already have seen. There is no magic and there are no monsters in Atlantis. Even the ominous oreichalkos is only second to ordinary gold. And what about the cold northern wind in Atlantis, or the missing rain in summer? Surely a blessed country, just like Herodotus' Egypt or Mesopotamia. But a paradise full of "wonders"? Not really. K.T. Frost was right when he wrote: "The whole description of the Athenian state in these dialogues seems much more fictitious than that of Atlantis itself." [Frost (1913) p. 195]
To depict Atlantis as an exotic country, Julia Annas puts forward the elephants as an argument. But are elephants really "exotic"? They are surely "foreign", and this is what Plato says about the building style in Atlantis: Barbaric. But "foreign" is not the same as "exotic". There is a lack of fascination with Atlantis, especially when we think of the drinking of a bull's blood. Greeks thought this to be poisenous (what it isn't, by the way). Atlantis is not exotic since it does not evoke a positive fascination. It is foreign. We cannot agree that Atlantis became so popular because it has an exotic fascination. If this was the case, why is e.g. Eldorado, the fabled city of gold in America, not much more popular?
Then, Julia Annas tries to foster the modern myth of the truth assertions. She argues that a story that is "presented emphatically as true", that "insists on its own truth" would show a "familiar feature of fiction" [p. 53]. But the claim that the Atlantis story insists emphatically on its own truth is a modern myth. If we look at the many alleged truth assertions, some turn out to be there only in translation, some turn out to be casual and inconspicuous statements, and some even turn out to be quite the opposite! When Critias says that something sounds incredible but that he has to report it as it was handed down to him, is this really a "truth" assertion? It is rather the opposite! (And if this was a sign of fiction, why not in case of Herodotus' Histories?)
No, Julia Annas' idea of a "convention in storytelling" [p. 53] which allegedly makes an invention of the story transparent to the readers does not work. Such conventions developed only later, as she says herself about the Greek novel. Plato's Atlantis story is not a fictional novel avant la lettre. It may still be an invention, though, but if so, it must be meant as a deceptive story, not recognizable to the readers. (We do not continue to unfold the implications of this latter possibility at this place, which leads to nowhere, too.)
The academic authors put forward by Julia Annas who allegedly demonstrate that Plato's Athens-Atlantis story is an invented and fictional (or deceptive) story are disappointing. These are Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Christopher Gill, and Diskin Clay.
Vidal-Naquet was a self-proclaimed essayist, and yes, he really was one. Also Christopher Gill changed his mind about questions concerning Atlantis without bothering too much with arguments, just as it pleased him. All three argue with the 9,000 years of Atlantis which is no real argument, no matter how you look at it. All three present very distorted versions of the reception history of Plato's Atlantis, full of modern myths. How do they want to recognize ancient myths, if they cannot recognize modern myths? All three argue with Aristotle's alleged statement against the existence of Atlantis. But this does not exist, as was demonstrated in 2010, one year before Julia Annas wrote her article.
Unfortunately, Julia Annas avoids any comment about the striking contradictions among her preferred proponents of the Atlantis invention hypothesis, and among other researchers. Thus, Julia Annas provides the impression that there exists a consolidated Atlantis invention hypothesis, i.e. a stable theory, in academia. Which doesn't. It is simply not enough that all (?) agree on the one single fact that it is an invention while proposing many contradictory reasons and interpretations for this. If it is a recognizable fiction you would expect e.g. a consolidated interpretation of the recognizable meaning of this fictional story. But there are as many invention hypotheses as there are localisation hypotheses.
Julia Annas herself mentions the Aristotle argument briefly in a footnote (it is always in a footnote, always!) [footnote 3 to p. 52 on p. 63]. But what is it what Aristotle allegedly said about Atlantis? That Plato made Atlantis disappear with poetic liberty. The idea behind is to avoid questions why there are no traces of Atlantis. But Julia Annas herself calls this explanation for the destruction of primeval Athens and Atlantis on another page a "feeble response" [p. 56]. This is almost a self-contradiction by Julia Annas, or at least it is quite strange.
Diskin Clay put forward this idea: "Plato fabricated the myth of Atlantis with such art that it has virtually gone unrecognized as a fiction". This idea requires an analysis on its own: How do you distinguish a (distorted) real story from a (perfectly written) invented story? Most authors in academia currently avoid this question.
Julia Annas does not say much about the reception history of the Athens-Atlantis story but it seems that she follows the distorted, unreliable versions as depicted by the authors she mentioned. She shortly says that the idea of Atlantis as a real place "has a long history, one which picked up pace in the early modern period as Europeans began to explore distant parts of the world." [p. 60] This is not wrong but provides a wrong impression. While avoiding Antiquity and the Middle Ages, and pointing only to the 1500s, Julia Annas, too, helps to draw the picture that the idea of Atlantis as a real place emerged only late at this time, and then in a crazy way. But this it not true.[Cf. Franke (2016)]
Most authors in Antiquity were in favour of the existence of Plato's Atlantis. As Diskin Clay said, if this is an invention, then it is made "with such art that it has virtually gone unrecognized as a fiction". Also the Middle Ages were not silent about Atlantis. And the discovery of America brought about no explosion of crazy localisation hypotheses, but only extended the literal location in the Atlantic Ocean to America. The explosion of crazy localisation hypotheses happened only much later, in the 19th century. It happened exactly when academia started to drop the idea of Altantis as a real place without good reasons. Both phenomena are related to each other. Leaving legitimate questions to pseudoscience is not a good idea for academic scholarship.[Cf. Franke (2016) p. 431-433]
It is also wrong that the Renaissance utopias were inspired by Plato's Atlantis. They were inspired by Plato's Republic, i.e. the state developed "in words", whereas primeval Athens and Atlantis are the opposite of an utopia, they allegedly are real places. This can be demonstrated from Thomas Morus' Utopia over Francis Bacon's New Atlantis (Atlantis is in America in this text and serves only as a secondary source of inspiration) until Denis Vairasse d'Allais' Severambians. We do not explain in detail why Olof Rudbeck is the wrong example to demonstrate nationalist and other unscientific motivations for Atlantis search. Julia Annas herself recognizes (but only in a footnote) that Rudbeck was not only driven by obsession but also by "a serious scientific endeavor". [footnote 24 to p. 60 on p. 64]
It is a serious problem that Julia Annas mentions modern historical-critical approaches towards Altantis as a real place only by the key word "Thera". She even avoids to say "Minoan civilization". Thus, she evokes the impression of simple-minded Atlantis searchers excited by fantastically exploding volcanoes. Julia Annas is completely silent about academic researchers such as Wilhelm Brandenstein (1951), Massimo Pallottino (1952), Rhys Carpenter (1966), Desmond Lee (1971), or John V. Luce (1978). Furthermore, "Thera" is mentioned in a series of quite unreasonable hypotheses such as Bolivia, Britain, or Ireland, as if the quality of all these hypotheses would be the same. And finally, Julia Annas does not mention with a single word the Sea Peoples.
This downplaying, ridiculing, and silencing of the reception history and of legitimate alternative ideas is very speaking and of course not acceptable under academic standards. Whoever wants to demonstrate that Atlantis is an invention cannot avoid to deal with legitimate alternative propositions. Much more credible in this respect is e.g. Gunnar Rudberg.
The basic interpretation of Julia Annas shows the well-known hypothesis of a multiplicity of meanings which allegedly all are present in Plato's Athens-Atlantis story: There is the Athens of the past, present in primeval Athens, and the Athens of the present, present in Atlantis. There is Sparta present in primeval Athens, and the Persian empire present in Atlantis. Concerning the war, two patterns are said to fit: The Persian wars, but not with Salamis, and the Peloponnesisan war, but not with Athens' defeat, because Syracuse was victorious, as everybody knows. Logically, Julia Annas should have asked for the presence of Syracuse in the Athens-Atlantis story, too, and concerning a western naval power, why not taking Carthage into consideration? Carthage is really not more far-fetched than the Persian empire.
It is always the same problem with this type of hypothesis: It is too much, and it is too contradictory, and it is too arbitrary just to puzzle the most diverse things together, partly contradictory to themselves, until you have the complete picture covered one way or the other. The arbitrariness is underlined by the words "clear" or "obvious" repeatedly used by Julia Annas in a conspicuous frequency on these pages [p. 54 f.], although it is not so clear and not really obvious. And as Gunnar Rudberg said, it is difficult to see primeval Athens depicted as a known real place, back in time, yet its opponent Atlantis only as a vague mixture of components without any place in known reality.
Fiction and allusion want to be recognized, but here we have to doubt whether any ancient reader could recognize all these multiple meanings with all their contradictions and arbitrariness. This hypothesis is the perfect victim for Occam's razor. Gunnar Rudberg's Syracuse hypothesis e.g. is much better. It is more straightforward, less complicated, more connected with Plato's life, and does not hesitate to consider alternative opinions.
At least, Julia Annas is right that Plato wanted exactly what he made Socrates saying: To show the ideal state in action. There are many other interpretations which put this aim aside but Julia Annas does not follow them. Silently. Any clear criticism of differing views is avoided by her. But how can science work without criticism? Another criticism avoided is related to Annas' idea that the dialogue participant Critias is a philosophical character [p. 52]. With this idea Julia Annas stands against an ever-growing phalanx of academic interpreters, including now Christopher Gill (after another change of mind), who see Critias as an unphilosophical moron, not as a philosopher.
It is strange that Julia Annas calls the story of Athens-Atlantis "mythical material" [p. 52]. Why mythical? Are there any mythical, supernatural wonders in the story? No. At least not according to Plato's judgement. And no, neither city-founding gods nor elephants make the story mythical. Also the time is not "mythical" since a written tradition exists about this time in Egypt, whereas in Greece there are even no myths left about this time. In the meantime, even Christopher Gill has dropped the idea (after another change of mind) that the Atlantis story is intended to be a non-realistic story. According to the dialogue Timaeus, the Athens-Atlantis story is just the opposite of being mythical, since the story comes from written sources in Egypt whereas the Greeks only have myths, or no memory at all.
The idea that the story from Egypt is logos and not mythos is made quite clear in the Timaeus-Critias. Julia Annas should e.g. have invested more thought on the concept of an eikos mythos. What, if the story presented by Critias in the dialogue Critias is exactly such an eikos mythos, just as the speech presented by Timaeus? And why does Critias describe in the Timaeus how he will form his speech by combining the logos from Egypt and Plato's ideal state? And how does he combine them? We find no answers to these questions in Julia Annas' text, but these are the important questions. Such considerations have been published e.g. by Herwig Görgemanns (2000), another scholar who thinks about a historical core of the Athens-Atlantis story, and about whom Julia Annas is only silent.
Not convincing is Julia Annas' explanation why the Critias was never completed. According to her, Plato had spent too much effort on depicting Atlantis so that Atlantis became too impressive, withdrawing the attention from the actual message. Therefore, Plato stopped working on it [p. 62]. Besides the fact that this idea depicts Plato as dreaming and not as planning while writing, Plato could have handled this better, if it just was an invention. It's quite easy to strike through some pages, especially if these pages contain only pure inventions, and to write a shorter version of the same text.
Finally, what about the links Julia Annas sees between the Athens-Atlantis story and the Republic on the one hand side, and Timaeus' cosmology on the other hand side? This was the initial reason why she wrote this article.
Concerning the Republic, Julia Annas sees a link in the fact that primeval Athenians lived a virtous life although no glory survived their demise. According to the Republic, virtue is a value in itself, not a means to achieve anything else, neither wealth nor glory. This seems to fit at first glance. But the true reason for the fall of primeval Athens is the cyclical catastrophism in which Plato really believed. It might be possible to demonstrate the philosophical message of virtue without glory with this example, yet this is only a side effect. And since the glory of primeval Athens had been written down by the Egyptians and thus survived, it is even not really fitting.
Concerning the link to Timaeus' cosmology, Julia Annas puts forward the awarness of insignificance of human beings in relation to the cosmos and to god as expressed in the Laws. Annas argues that the Laws allow us a view into what was not written after Plato stopped working on the Critias. Here, we can agree, this may be a real link, and Julia Annas even found the same idea already present in the Republic. Yet again, this is rather a side effect.
The main link between the cosmology of Timaeus and the Athens-Atlantis story is of course the preparation of human beings, their nature, and the world in which they act. On this basis primeval Athens and Atlantis will emerge.
The main link between the Republic and the Athens-Atlantis story is of course the relation of primeval Athens as an ideal state to potentially everything what has been said about the ideal state in the Republic, but especially the passage where Socrates says that the ideal state once existed in the past, may exist now in far-away countries, and will exist in the future (Republic VI 499cd). We can only wonder why Julia Annas does not mention this clear link. Maybe, because it runs counter to her preferred narrative of the Athens-Atlantis story as a fictional story?
We have seen that Julia Annas made many mistakes concerning Plato's Atlantis story. But why? It seems that Julia Annas is just annoyed with the Atlantis question and wants to concentrate on the philosophical message. Therefore, she tries to quickly thrust aside Atlantis.
With this attitude Julia Annas stands in a long tradition of those scholars who developed the Atlantis invention hypothesis in the 19th century. Because they all acted in reaction to contemporary crazy localisation hypotheses. From the Göttingen empiricists over Delambre and Susemihl to Berger, the whole idea of Atlantis as an invention had been developed step by step in reactive responses to crazy localisation hypotheses [cf. Franke (2016) p. 378]. Of course, this is not good science. Good science is developed proactively and sine ira et studio. But if a scientific opinion evolves only in annoyed reaction, time and again in annoyed reaction, the result will naturally be problematic.
And this is the case with Julia Annas' approach, too. She wants to concentrate on the philosophical message, but the correct and full understanding of Plato's philosophical message itself is endangered by not striving for a full understanding of Plato's works by too quickly pushing aside annoying ideas.
Yes, the core message of the Athens-Atlantis story may be delivered even if read as an invented, fictional story. But not the full message. Also for the Platonic Myth of Er in the Republic it is of high interest whether Plato just invented this mythos or whether he built upon a real tradition. The same is valid for the eikos mythos of Timaeus: Is it just a purely invented fairy tale, or the serious beginning of natural science? And so it is with the Athens-Atlantis story: If Plato assumed the reality of primeval Athens and Atlantis, this has an impact. There is e.g. the question whether Plato considered his ideal state as an utopia out of reach, or as an achievable ideal, or something in between. This is an important part of the philosophical message, and it is closely related to the question whether Plato believed in the reality of primeval Athens and Atlantis and how he imagined it.
And last but not least, humanism and enlightenment lead us to cherish erudition in history even if there is momentarily no further practical application to be seen for this knowledge. Thus the interest in Atlantis as a real place would even be justified if it did not contribute to the philosophical message.
Annas (2011): Julia Annas, The Atlantis Story: the Republic and the Timaeus, in: Plato's Republic – A Critical Guide, edited by Mark L. McPherran, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge / New York 2011; pp. 52-64. Based on a discourse held at the 13th Arizona Colloquium in Ancient Philosophy 15-17 Februar 2008 University of Arizona, Tucson. (download here)
Brandenstein (1949): Wilhelm Brandenstein, Studien zu Platons Atlantiserzählung, Archivi Orientalni (Prague) No. 17 (1949); pp. 69-84.
Brandenstein (1951): Wilhelm Brandenstein, Atlantis – Größe und Untergang eines geheimnisvollen Inselreiches, Issue 3 of the series: Arbeiten aus dem Institut für allgemeine und vergleichende Sprachwissenschaft Graz, edited by Wilhelm Brandenstein, published by Gerold & Co., Wien 1951.
Carpenter (1966): Rhys Carpenter, Discontinuity in Greek Civilization – The J.H. Gray Lectures for 1965, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 1966.
Clay (1995/1997): Diskin Clay, The Plan of Plato's Critias, in: Tomás Calvo/Luc Brisson (Hrsg.), Interpreting the Timaeus-Critias, Proceedings of the IV. Symposium Platonicum in Granada September 1995, Academia-Verlag, St. Augustin 1997; pp. 49-54.
Clay (1999/2000): Diskin Clay, The Invention of Atlantis: The Anatomy of a Fiction, with an introduction by Gary M. Gurtler SJ, in: John J. Cleary / Gary M. Gurtler SJ (Hrsg.), Proceedings of the Boston Area Colloquium in Ancient Philosophy, Vol. XV (1999), Brill, Leiden/Bosten/Köln 2000; pp. ix-xi, 1-21.
Franke (2006/2016): Thorwald C. Franke, Mit Herodot auf den Spuren von Atlantis – Könnte Atlantis doch ein realer Ort gewesen sein?, published by Books on Demand, Norderstedt 2016. First edition 2006. No English edition.
Franke (2010/2012): Thorwald C. Franke, Aristotle and Atlantis – What did the philosopher really think about Plato's island empire?, published by Books on Demand, Norderstedt 2012. German edition 2010.
Franke (2016): Thorwald C. Franke, Kritische Geschichte der Meinungen und Hypothesen zu Platons Atlantis – von der Antike über das Mittelalter bis zur Moderne, published by Books on Demand, Norderstedt 2016. No English edition.
Frost (1913): K.T. Frost, The Critias and Minoan Crete, in: The Journal of Hellenic Studies Vol. 33 (1913); pp. 189-206.
Gill (1976): Christopher Gill, The origin of the Atlantis myth, in: Trivium (St. David's University College, University of Wales, Lampeter) Vol. 11 (1976); pp. 1-11.
Gill (1977): Christopher Gill, The Genre of the Atlantis Story, in: Classical Philology Vol. 72 No. 4 (1977); pp. 287-304.
Gill (1979a): Christopher Gill, Plato's Atlantis Story and the Birth of Fiction, Philosophy and Literature, No. 3 (1979); pp. 64-78.
Gill (1979b): Christopher Gill, Plato and Politics – The Critias and the Politicus, in Phronesis Vol. 24 No. 2 (1979); pp. 148-167.
Gill (1980): Christopher Gill, Plato – The Atlantis Story, Timaeus 17-27, Critias, with Introduction, Notes and Vocabulary, Bristol Classical Press, Bristol 1980.
Gill (1993): Christopher Gill, Plato on Falsehood – not Fiction, in: Christopher Gill / T.P. Wiseman (Hrsg.), Lies and Fiction in the Ancient World, University of Exeter Press, Exeter 1993; pp. 38-87.
Gill (2017): Christopher Gill, Plato's Atlantis Story – Text, Translation and Commentary, Liverpool University Press, Liverpool 2017.
Görgemanns (1994): Herwig Görgemanns, Platon, Heidelberger Studienhefte zur Altertumswissenschaft, Universitätsverlag C. Winter, Heidelberg 1994.
Görgemanns (1994/1996): Herwig Görgemanns, Platon und die atlantische Insel – Der Entwurf eines Geschichtsmythos, with discussion, in: Verein zur Förderung der Aufarbeitung der Hellenischen Geschichte e.V. (Hrsg.), Hellenische Mythologie / Vorgeschichte – Die Hellenen und ihre Nachbarn von der Vorgeschichte bis zur klassischen Periode, Tagung 9.-11.12.1994 Ohlstadt, DZA Verlag für Kultur und Wissenschaft, Altenburg 1996; pp. 107-125.
Görgemanns (2000): Herwig Görgemanns, Wahrheit und Fiktion in Platons Atlantis-Erzählung, in: Hermes No. 128 (2000); pp. 405-420.
Lee (1971/1977): Desmond Lee, Plato – Timaeus and Critias, Translated with an introduction and an appendix on Atlantis by Desmond Lee, The Penguin Classics series, Penguin Books, Harmondsworth 1971; reprinted with revisions 1977; pp. 146-167.
Luce (1969): John V. Luce, Lost Atlantis – New Light on an Old Legend, McGraw-Hill, New York 1969. German edition: Atlantis – Legende und Wirklichkeit, Gustav Lübbe publisher, Bergisch Gladbach 1969.
Luce (1978/1979): John V. Luce, The Literary Perspective – The Sources and Literary Form of Plato's Atlantis Narrative, in: Edwin S. Ramage (Hrsg.), Atlantis – Fact or Ficton?, Indiana University Press, Bloomington/London 1978; pp. 49-78. – German first edition: Die literarische Perspektive – Die Quellen und die literarische Form von Platons Atlantis-Erzählung, in: Edwin S. Ramage (Hrsg.), Atlantis – Mythos, Rätsel, Wirklichkeit?, Umschau-Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 1979; pp. 65-101.
Luce (1982): John V. Luce, Review of: The Making of Myth, by Phyllis Young Forsyth; in: Phoenix Vol. 36 No. 2 (Summer 1982); pp. 174-176.
Luce (1994): John V. Luce, The Changing Face of the Thera Problem, in: Classics Ireland Bd. 1 (1994); pp. 61-73.
Pallottino (1952): Massimo Pallottino, Atlantide, Archeologia classica No. 4 (1952); pp. 229-240.
Rudberg (1917/2012): Gunnar Rudberg, Atlantis och Syrakusai – En Studie till Platons Senare Politiska Skrifter, in: Eranos No. 17 (1917); pp. 1-80 with map. English first publication: Atlantis and Syracuse – Did Plato's experiences on Sicily inspire the legend?, edited by Thorwald C. Franke, translated by Cecelia Murphy, published by BoD, Norderstedt 2012.
Vidal-Naquet (1964): Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Athčne et l'Atlantide – Structure et Signification d'un mythe platonicien, in: Revue des études grecques, No. 77 (1964); later in: Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Le chasseur noir – Formes des pensées et formes des société dans le monde grec, Maspero, Paris 1981. English first publication: Athens and Atlantis – Structure and Meaning of a Platonic Myth, translated by Andrew Szegedy-Maszak, in: Pierre Vidal-Naquet, The Black Hunter – Forms of Thought and Forms of Society in the Greek World, The John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore / London 1986. German first publication: Athen und Atlantis – Struktur und Bedeutung eines platonischen Mythos, translated by Andreas Wittenburg, in: Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Der schwarze Jäger – Denkformen und Gesellschaftsformen in der griechischen Antike, Campus-Verlag, Frankfurt/M. 1989.
Vidal-Naqet (1980): Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Un Eichmann de papier - Anatomie d'un mensonge, in: Esprit No. 45 (1980); pp. 8-52. Englisch: A Paper Eichmann – Anatomy of a Lie, in: Assassins of Memory, Columbia University Press, New York 1992.
Vidal-Naquet (1982): Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Hérodote et l'Atlantide – Entre les Grecs et les Juifs – Réflexions sur l'historiographie du sičcle des Lumičres, in: Quaderni di Storia No. 16, Bari 1982. Later in: Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Les Grecs, les Historiens, la Démocratie – Le grand Écart, Éditions La Découverte, Paris 2000.
Vidal-Naquet / Lloyd (1987/1990/1992): Pierre Vidal-Naquet, L'Atlantide et les Nations, in: Répresentations de l'origine: Littérature, histoire, civilisation, Cahiers CRLH-CIRAOI No. 4, Publications de l'université de la Réunion, 1987. New edition in: Pierre Vidal-Naquet, La Démocratie Grecque vue d'ailleurs, Flammarion, Paris 1990; pp. 139-159. English translation by Janet Lloyd: Atlantis and the Nations, in: Critical Inquiry Vol. 18 No. 2 (1992); pp. 300-326.
Vidal-Naquet (1998): Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Auschwitz et l'Atlantide – Note sur un récit de Georges Perec; in: Sigila No. 2 (1998) ("Biffures et Amnésie – Traços e amnésias"); pp. 17-28.
Vidal-Naquet (2005): Pierre Vidal-Naquet, L'Atlantide – Petite histoire d'un mythe platonicien, Les Belles Lettres, Paris 2005. German first publication: Pierre Vidal-Naquet, Atlantis – Geschichte eines Traums, published by C. H. Beck, München 2006.