The Stoic Life: Emotions, Duties, and Fate

Paperback | February 15, 2007

byTad Brennan

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Tad Brennan explains how to live the Stoic life - and why we might want to. Stoicism has been one of the main currents of thought in Western civilization for two thousand years: Brennan offers a fascinating guide through the ethical ideas of the original Stoic philosophers, and shows howvaluable these ideas remain today, both intellectually and in practice. He writes in a lively informal style which will bring Stoicism to life for readers who are new to ancient philosophy. The Stoic Life will also be of great interest to philosophers and classicists seeking a full understanding ofthe intellectual legacy of the Stoics. Brennan starts from scrupulous attention to the evidence (references are provided to all of the standard collections of Stoic texts). He provides translations of the original texts, with extensive annotations that will allow readers to pursue further reading. No knowledge of Greek is required. Anintroductory section provides context by introducing the reader to the most important figures in the Stoic school, the philosophical climate in which they worked, and a brief summary of the leading tenets of the Stoic system. After this context is established, the book is divided into threesections. The first provides a thorough exploration of the Stoic school's theories of psychology, focusing on their analyses of fear, desire, and other emotions. The second develops the more centrally ethical topics of value, obligation, and right action. The third part explores the Stoic school'sviews on fate, determinism, and moral responsibility. For anyone interested in the origins of Western ethical thought, who wishes to understand the vast influence that Stoic philosophy has had on philosophy and religion up to our time, this book will be essential reading.

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Tad Brennan explains how to live the Stoic life - and why we might want to. Stoicism has been one of the main currents of thought in Western civilization for two thousand years: Brennan offers a fascinating guide through the ethical ideas of the original Stoic philosophers, and shows howvaluable these ideas remain today, both intellect...

Tad Brennan is in the Department of Philosophy, Northwestern University.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:352 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.75 inPublished:February 15, 2007Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019921705X

ISBN - 13:9780199217052

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Table of Contents

I. Introduction1. Why be a Stoic?2. The Ancient Stoics: People and Sources3. The Ancient Philosophical Background4. A Philosophical Orientation to StoicismII. Psychology5. Impressions and Assent6. Belief and Knowledge7. Impulses and EmotionsIII. Ethics8. Goods and Indifferents9. Final Ends10. Oikeiosis and Others11. Befitting Actions, Part I12. Befitting Actions, Part II13. Befitting Actions, Part IIIIV. Fate14. God and Fate15. Necessity and Responsibility16. The Lazy Argument17. The Evolution of the WillConclusion18. Taking Stock

Editorial Reviews

`To be able to expound a complex doctrine like Stoic ethics - rendered even more difficult by the evidence's fragmentary nature - in a lucid and trenchant manner is in itself a sign of philosophical acumen, but Brennan goes beyond mere exposition by advancing some of his own views. . . . Tosummarize the book would be to write it again, so rich is its content.'Gretchen Reydams-Schils, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews