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This symposium grew out of James Boyd White's Marx Lecture, given April 21, 1994, at the University of Cincinnati, and this issue owes its existence to some happy coincidences with that event. One coincidence was the idea occurring to a number of us that, as nice as it would be to publish Professor White's thoughts on the Crito in these pages of the Law Review, how much nicer still it would be to surround those thoughts, or to follow them, with the thoughts of other scholars in the field, showing how these others responded to the text discussed by White or to similar texts. The editors of the Law Review having endorsed this idea, we invited a number of other scholars to share with us their thoughts on any related text or topic that happened
to be presently engaging their attention (after advising them only in a general way about the gist of White's remarks on Plato's work). Our initial symposium proposal was, then, that our intellectual exchange would not take place during the actual event of White's lecture, but rather would amount to a published epilogue to the delivery of his lecture. We were pleasantly surprised by the overwhelming positive response that our invitations to this "paper" symposium received.

A second coincidence followed the first, however, and it led to a more true symposium's being held. A number of already committed symposium participants said that they wished to attend Jim White's Marx Lecture, and they further suggested that the College of Law might support and coordinate such a gathering. Dean Joseph Tomain, Associate Dean Barbara Watts, and Professor John Applegate (the faculty advisor to the Law Review) enthusiastically welcomed this suggestion, seeing it as an opportunity to make what had begun as a "paper" symposium into a more lively gathering. Here was the chance to get law teachers together with students, all of whom were intent upon discussing how law, literature, and the humanities might be taught productively or otherwise brought together. With this institutional underwriting
in place, members of the Law Review editorial board and staff then managed, tirelessly and selflessly, to turn this opportunity into an actuality.