- Series: Meditations of Marcus Aurelius
- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: Harvard University Press (December 28, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0674007077
- ISBN-13: 978-0674007079
- Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 0.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 17 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #125,802 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Inner Citadel: The <i>Meditations</i> of Marcus Aurelius (Meditations of Marcus Aurelius)
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
See the Best Books of 2017 So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the best books of the year so far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius has been a popular text since the sixteenth century, and is a vital source in understanding the ideas of the Stoic School. Hadot seeks to demonstrate the context and background to Marcus Aurelius's writings, and helps to explain them to a modern readership. He makes the crucial point that Stoics considered the sole purpose of studying philosophy was to improve one's moral conduct. Hence Marcus's writings are in the form of a personal journal designed to develop the practice of acting morally and reflectively...Throughout the book Hadot stresses the depth of Stoic thought, and the interest it holds for modern philosophy...I would particularly recommend this book to those whose education in Ancient Philosophy has centred on Plato and Aristotle, and who are interested in finding out how their ideas were developed by later philosophers. (Matthew Clark JACT Review)
In The Inner Citadel, Hadot applies to Marcus Aurelius' Meditations his characteristic interpretive approach: treating ancient philosophy as a 'way of life,' in particular one which provides its students with 'spiritual exercises' to enable them to make progress towards wisdom, and treating ancient philosophical texts with attention to the 'forms of discourse,' or constraints of genre, tradition, and audience that affected their production...The Inner Citadel is a rich and substantial book and will certainly affect future scholarship on Marcus Aurelius. (Rachana Kemtekur Bryn Mawr Classical Review)
Hadot probes Marcus Aurelius's guidelines and convictions and discerns the until now unperceived conceptual system that grounds them. Abundantly quoting the Meditations to illustrate his analysis, he allows Marcus Aurelius to speak directly to us. Hadot unfolds for us the general philosophical context of the Meditations, commenting on the philosophers Marcus Aurelius read and giving special attention to the teachings of Epictetus, whom Marcus followed closely...Hadot's study offers a fresh picture of the fascinating philosopher-emperor, a fuller understanding of theories and doctrines of Stoicism, and rich insight on the culture of the Roman empire in the second century. Hadot has been working on Marcus Aurelius for more than twenty years; in this book he distills his analysis and conclusions with extraordinary lucidity for the general reader and specialist. (Word Trade)
Plato used to talk of philosopher-kings; Marcus Aurelius was something even better: He was a philosopher-emperor. The leader of the Roman Empire spent most of his life in troubling times, campaigning against the barbarians, dealing with conspiracy at home, even combatting an upstart cult that revered one of those Galilean wonder-workers. Yet the most powerful man in the world still managed to live the life of a Stoic, and to record his reflections on how we should live. Those meditations, as these inner pep talks are usually called, became one of the best-loved books of antiquity...This study--by a leading authority on Marcus--provides background matter and analysis of the main themes in the Meditations, as well as fresh translations of many of the sayings. (Washington Post Book World)
Because both translator and author are contemporaries, discussions between them contributed to an excellent and faithful translation....[Hadot argues] that The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius must be understood primarily as a 'philosophical' work not in the sense of speculative philosophy, but as philosophy that represents a way of life in the tradition of the Stoics...This is an excellent study of the Meditations. (P. A. Streveler Choice)
The power and vigour of H.'s interpretation derive partly from his belief in the importance and continuing value of Stoic philosophy at least broadly interpreted in terms of a stoic outlook on life...In this book, as in his work as a whole, he sets a demanding standard, and an example which we can all applaud. (R. B. Rutherford Classical Review)
Pierre Hadot, Professeur Honoraire of the College de France, aims in The Inner Citadel to discover what the emperor wanted to accomplish by writing [the Meditations] The book he has written (published in French in 1992) achieves these aims superbly while also offering a broad introduction to the intellectual world of the second century Through his analysis of the Meditations, Hadot exposes to our view the mind of those who ruled the Roman world at the height of its prosperity. (Kenneth D. Bratt Calvin Theological Journal)
Text: English (translation)
Original Language: French --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
Top customer reviews
A careful reader should have noticed an error in line 7 from the bottom of page 132. The correct text (Book VIII, Chapter 36) should read: "...In addition, remind yourself that it is not the future, nor the past, which..." instead of "...that it is not the present, nor the past..."
Hadot also takes the time to outline the development of Stoic philosophy, tracing the teacher/student relation through a few generations. He makes a point to explain to the reader the circumstances in which Meditations was written, why it was written, and for whom it was written. All of these are important aspects to consider when one wants to understand the books more fully. Hadot also takes the time to give examples of how this ancient school of thought can be implemented in the modern world (although that is not the point of this book, as there are others which focus on that topic more exclusively.)
If you have any interest in understanding Meditations, or any interest in Stoic philosophy, then this book is a must read.
The Meditations were Marcus' attempt to practice Stoic spiritual exercises. The writings were not intended to be seen by anyone else as much to reinforce Stoic teachings to the author. Writing like this was a practice of Marcus' time, something that was taught to him by his teacher Fronto. Presenting the same thought in different ways was part of this exercise. By walking us through the influences of Epictetus, Chrysippus and other Stoics on Marcus, detailing how these relate to the three disciplines, and discussing all the interconnections and controversies over each, Hadot provides a comprehensive account of Stoicism that lays down the key tenets. As such this work is an essential companion handbook to the original works.
The reader also develops a strong familiarity with Marcus, something that can only happen superficially with the Meditations alone. How did this most powerful man, ruler of the Roman Empire, come to live the philosophy that was almost the antithesis of his official role? One develops great sympathy and understanding both for Marcus' personal struggles and the challenges he faced to live up to his philosophical beliefs. The Medications endure today, both because of their core teachings on Stoicism, but also because of the almost mythical reputation of its author.
Hadot's writings are very accessible to the lay reader. He explains complex topics with clarity, alerts the reader to upcoming challnges, and gives a fair hearing to those who disagree with him. It is a joy to read his writing.