- Series: Cambridge Companions to Philosophy
- Paperback: 450 pages
- Publisher: Cambridge University Press (May 5, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0521779855
- ISBN-13: 978-0521779852
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #193,688 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Cambridge Companion to the Stoics (Cambridge Companions to Philosophy)
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"I thoroughly recommend this book to anybody with an interest in Stoicism, its history, and its legacy. [An] unqualified success. The Companion leaves us not only with a good impression of, and furthered interests in, the Stoics themselves, but also with the systematic question of whether Stoic ethics and moral psychology can be separated from their theoretical and cosmological commitments. If they can, they have a good deal to teach us moderns about the role of reason, emotion and virtue in human life." Dominique Kuenzle, University of Sheffield, Metapsychology
"...another fine volume in the Cambridge Companion series, a series which always delivers on it promise to give 'specialists' a solid conspectus of the latest scholarship..." -Ancient Philosophy, Jeffrey S. Purinton
This volume offers an odyssey through the ideas of the Stoics in three ways: through the historical trajectory of the school itself and its influence; through the recovery of the history of Stoic thought; through the ongoing confrontation with Stoicism, showing how it refines philosophical traditions, challenges the imagination, and ultimately defines the kind of life one chooses to lead.New readers will find this the most accessible guide to the Stoics currently available. Advanced students and specialists will find a conspectus of developments in the interpretation of the Stoics.
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This is a compendium of essays and not all authors are equal. As an example, there is a chapter on Stoic logic early in the book that is clearly written by an accomplished expert; however, the entire chapter is essentially wasted on the average reader as it wades into levels of minutiae aimed at an academic interested in reading texts to extract hidden or hard to find details. There is no introduction as to why Stoic logic is important, how it evolved, who evolved it, how we interpret it at a macro level, or what it offered to other schools of philosophy. True, some of this information can be inferred in the meat of the text, but you have to read about "exclusive-cum-exhaustive disjunctive assertibles" to find it. I understand this has critical importance to scholarship, but as an admitted novice I rely on the experts who dedicate their lives/careers to the field to understand these intricacies and provide their interpretation in an understandable format.
I would certainly recommend this to others, but would advise average readers not to become discouraged because of one or two chapters. It is still worth the read and it's clear that many of the authors collaborated together and did an excellent job of trying to make many complicated aspects of Stoicism accessible.
Contributors include: David Sedley, Christopher Gill, R.J. Hankinson, Suzanne Bobzien, Michael J. White, Keimpe Algra, Dorothea Frede, Jacques Brunschwig, Malcolm Schofield, Tad Brennan, R.J. Hankinson, David Blank & Catherine Atherton, Alexander Jones, T.H. Irwin, A.A. Long.