Irley F. Franco

Academic Responsibilities

Founder member of the Centre of Ancient Philosophy Studies

Coordinator of specializations in Art and Philosophy, and Ancient Philosophy, both of the Philosophy Department and CCE of PUC-Rio.



Doctorate in Philosophy, PUC-Rio, 1993


She has a Bachelor’s Degree (1983), a Master’s Degree (1986) and a Doctorate in Philosophy (1993) from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio), where she has taught since 2002. She took an unfinished degree in Psychology (1971-1973) also at PUC-Rio. She was an audit student at the École Pratique des Hautes Études during the academic years of 1974 and 1975, where she had the opportunity to attend lectures by Pierre Hadot, Jean Jolivet and Jean-Pierre Vernant, among others. She is currently taking a post-doctorate at the Department of Classical and Vernacular Literature of the Philosophy, Literature and Humanities Faculty of the University of São Paulo (USP). She is a founder member of the Centre of Ancient Philosophy Studies of PUC-Rio (NUFA), created in 1994, with the aim of promoting the rigorous academic training of post-graduates and scholars in the field of Ancient Philosophy. She was the director of the Philosophy Department of PUC-Rio during the period from April 2008 to November 2011; she was the editor of the magazine O que nos faz pensar (ISSN 0104-6675) from 1994 to 2016; she created and coordinated the specialization courses in “Art and Philosophy” and “Ancient Philosophy”. Her principal fields of work concern Ancient Philosophy themes and their connections with the contemporary world. Her main lines of research are in Aesthetics, Ancient Literature, the History of Ancient Philosophy and Ontology. Her current research subjects are (1) Tragedy and Philosophy, and (2) Plato and Platonism (namely, the way the History of Philosophy has understood and communicated Plato’s written work over the centuries). Her principal academic publications include the book O Sopro do Amor. Um Comentário ao Discurso de Fedro no Banquete de Platão (2006), currently available for download at; the articles “Uma hipótese sobre o Banquete de Platão” (in Ethica, v. 15, p. 59-74, 2008), “Existe uma teoria das ideias stricto sensu nos diálogos de Platão?” (in Sképsis, v. 7, p. 30-39, 2014) and “Os argumentos formais dos platonistas em favor da existência das ideias no PERI IDEON e na Metafísica A9 de Aristóteles” (with Renato Matoso Brandão, in Anais de Filosofia Clássica, v. 8, p. 24-47, 2014); and various translations of importance to the study of philosophy, notably Herculine Barbin, Diário de um Hermafrodita, with a preface by Michel Foucault, and a novella by Oscar Panizza, which is no longer in print or available on the market, published in 1983 by Francisco Alves; the texts by Charles H. Kahn on the Greek verb ‘to be’, including (1) Why existence did not emerge as a distinct concept in Greek Philosophy? (Por que a existência não emerge como um conceito distinto na filosofia grega?); (2) Some philosophical uses of the verb ‘to be’ in Plato (Alguns usos filosóficos do verbo ser em Platão); and (3) A retrospective of the verb ‘to be’ and the concept of being (Retrospectiva do verbo ser e do conceito de ser) (in Cadernos de Tradução do Departamento de Filosofia da PUC-Rio, launched in 1997 at PUC-Rio in the presence of Charles Kahn himself, currently out of print); and Harold Cherniss, “A economia filosófica da teoria das ideias (in O que nos faz pensar, n. 2, 1990, out of print). She has also made important non-academic contributions to the promotion of philosophy: (1) two adaptations of philosophical texts for the theatre, in collaboration with Elsa Buadas Wibmer, Assim falou Zaratustra/ Prólogo (2000) and O Banquete de Platão/Ensaio Aberto (1998), and their respective stagings, o Banquete, at the Solar Grandjean de Montigny and Assim falou Zaratustra, in commemoration of the Nietzsche centenary, at the Gávea Planetarium theatre. The staging of Zaratustra was the subject of the TV programme Espaço Aberto Pedro Bial, also at the time of the tribute to Nietzsche’s centenary.


Research projects

Aristotle’s theses on epic and tragic poetry in the Poetics.

Plato and Platonism

Recent publications


“Platonismo e Antiplatonismo no Mundo Contemporâneo”. Ensaios Filosóficos, v. 12, p. 76-89, 2015.

“Hipótese e verdade na dialética platônica da maturidade.” Prometeus. Filosofia em Revista, v. 17, p. 109-121, 2015.

“Existe uma teoria das ideias stricto sensu nos diálogos de Platão?” Sképsis (Salvador, online), v. 7, p. 30-39, 2014.

“A concepção aristotélica do Platão exotérico: a filosofia de Platão concebida como uma doutrina das ideias.” O que nos faz Pensar, v. 35, p. 64-84, 2014.

“Os argumentos formais dos platonistas em favor da existência das ideias no PERI IDEON e na Metafísica A9 de Aristóteles.”Anais de Filosofia Clássica (online), v. 8, p. 24-47, 2014.


Critique (at the printer’s): Aristotle. Poetics. Bilingual edition. Translation, Introduction and notes by Paulo Pinheiro, Editora 34, Archai: Revista de estudos sobre as origens do pensamento ocidental (online), n. 18, Sep.-Dec., pp. 415-423, 2016. DOI: -249X_18_14

Presentation of a Special Edition of “Filosofia Antiga e Literatura”, with Luisa Buarque de Holanda, Revista O que nos faz pensar, n. 34, 2014.

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