In this paper, I compare the Megarian thesis of Metaphysics IX 3 with other sources on the Megarians in order to clarify two questions: that of the unity and nature of the so-called Megarian school and that of Aristotle’s broader argument in IX 3. I first review the disputed issue of the status of the Megarian school and then examine two hypotheses regarding the identity behind Aristotle’s allusion in IX 3. Third, I explore the connection between Megarianism and Plato’s Euthydemus, (...) a task that helps us to contextualize Aristotle’s anti-Megarian polemic. Lastly, I build on the preceding argument in a re-examination of the Eleatic hypothesis with regard both to the Megarians as a whole and to the thesis that Aristotle transmits. (shrink)
Socratis et Socraticorum Reliquiae Source presents the transcription of the collection of testimonies about Socrates and Socratics (Socratis et Socraticorum Reliquiae) originally edited by G. Giannantoni. -/- The site enable users to access texts, exploit resources, and perform queries. Notes, additional information and a legenda for a better access to the texts are also available. -/- The publication is peer-reviewed and aspire to meet the highest quality standards. The content of the site and its internet addresses are stable and can (...) be freely consulted and used for scholarly purposes. -/- The site will be soon open for semantically enrich the data published on the websites. A use of peer-to-peer (p2p) networking will also provide an efficient and engaging collaborative work space. (shrink)
Wie kann man sich dem sokratischen Rätsel stellen? Dieses Buch bietet einige Anhaltspunkte, um das Problem von Sokrates und den sokratischen Philosophien aus verschiedenen Perspektiven anzugehen. Behandelt werden Sokrates und das sokratische Umfeld; das Problem des Sokrates bei Platon; die sokratischen Linien (darunter Antisthenes, die Megariker, die Kyrenaiker und Aischines) und die sokratische Rezeption bei Aristoteles, der epikureischen Tradition und Cicero. Mit Beiträgen von William Altman, Fiorenza Bevilacqua, Esteban Bieda, Aldo Brancacci, Michele Corradi, Dino De Santis, Mariana Gardella, Stefania Giombini, (...) Noreen Humble, Marta Jimenez, Dayvis Deniz Machín, Silvio Marino, Claudia Marsico, Joel Martínez, Stephano Mecci, David Murphy, Francesca Pentassuglio, Mario Regali, François Renaud, Livio Rossetti, Romina Simón, Nicholas Smith, Lucas Soares, Pilar Spangenberg, Alessandro Stavru, Francisco Villar, Matthew Watton und Vladimir Zuckerman. (shrink)
In this paper, I examine Antisthenes’s conception of truth in order to better understand the relation between ontology and language in his thought. I intend to show that it presents a sharp contrast to Plato’s account of the problem of truth, which relies on an affirmative conception of ontology that involves both the concepts of correspondence and of predicative attribution. While for both philosophers the problem of truth is central, Antisthenes develops a peculiar perspective that subverts Plato’s attempt to sort, (...) through dialectics, the interferences that permeate language, in order to gain access to an essential instance that warrants a truthful discourse. For Antisthenes, truth cannot be understood in terms of correspondence, since, properly speaking, there are only true propositions. (shrink)
In contrast to the abundance of discussion of Plato’s portrayal of the Socratic elenchos, relatively little work has been done on the elenchos as it appears in Xenophon. The reason is obvious: Xenophon makes much less use of the elenchus than Plato and what he does offer is not as interesting philosophically. Nevertheless, there are good reasons to look more closely at Xenophon’s portrait. It provides a corrective to the excessively intellectualizing portrait of the elenchus found in Plato’s writings, and (...) exhibits an educational quality that is characteristic of ancient Greek attitudes but not always stressed in treatments of Socrates. In the introduction to Bandini and Dorion 2000-2010, cxviii-clxxxii, Louis-André Dorion offers a probing analysis of the term elenchos as used by Xenophon and a broad survey of the elenchoi in Xenophon’s Socratic writings. Although Xenophon’s Socrates sometimes uses argumentation reminiscent of his Platonic cousin, this is only a minor part of his over-all conversational repertoire. Education is accomplished not by interrogation but by the direct and open communication of doctrine and by the practice of virtue (askēsis: see Mem. i 2.23, ii 1.1). Rather than employing the elenchos, Xenophon’s Socrates generally spends his time offering abundant useful advice to his friends. According to Dorion, Xenophon’s scant use of the elenchos is a result of his deep skepticism about its educational value. As a result of this skepticism, Xenophon creates an alternative portrait of Socrates in which interrogation plays a much smaller role. Dorion is certainly right to note that the elenchos is far less important for Xenophon than for Plato, but his conclusion is somewhat extreme. Although Xenophon does not focus on the Socratic elenchos, he does offer some portraits of it and he does not contest Plato’s fuller portrait of it either. This is because the elenchos does have some value for Xenophon, even if this value differs from what we may assume is its value in the Platonic portrait. As Morrison 1994 has shown, the elenchos serves a valuable role in selecting or preparing students for more substantive lessons. It can also play a valuable role in training for and acting in political affairs. And the elenchos can serve an educational role in another way, by contributing directly to the acquisition of virtue (sophrosune) by the interlocutor. I shall trace these significant roles of the elenchos for Xenophon. (shrink)
Son dönemde yapılan araştırmalarda en mutlu şehir olarak seçilen Sinop’un yüzyıllar öncesinde bir sakini vardı ki insanlık için mutlu olmanın doğru yolunu bulmayı kendine dert edinmişti. Öğretileri Roma İmparatorluğu’nun resmi dini gibi benimsenecek, Marcus Aurelius gibi Roma Krallarının filozofu olmaktan gurur duyacağı Stoa Okulunun ve Dünya Hükümdarı Büyük İskender’in büyük övgüsüne mazhar olmuş, Sinoplu Diogenes.
Books and journal articles have become the dominant modes of presentation in contemporary philosophy. This historically contingent paradigm prioritises textual expression and assumes a distinction between philosophical practice and its presented product. Using Socrates and Diogenes as exemplars, we challenge the presumed supremacy of the text and defend the importance of ways of life as modes of practiced presentation. We argue that text cannot capture the embodied activity of philosophy without remainder, and is therefore limited and incomplete. In particular, we (...) contend that a static text is essentially alienated from our practices of philosophising, words cannot unambiguously represent lives, and practiced presentation enriches our understanding beyond words alone. After discussing some pedagogical implications, we conclude with a plea for a pluralistic approach that recognises lives as legitimate and valuable modes of philosophical presentation. (shrink)
The focus of this paper is the dispute between the Academic Arcesilaus of Pitane (ca. 316–240 BC) and the philosophy of Zeno of Citium. Scholars typically claim that Arcesilaus set out to attack Zeno’s epistemology or theory of knowledge. The framework of epistemology prevails in the modern reconstruction of Arcesilaus’s arguments. Proponents of this framework usually contend that the epistemic possibility of Stoic “cognition” or “apprehension” (κατάληψις) is the principal aim of Arcesilaus’s attack. The aim of this article is to (...) contest the limited scope of the framework of epistemology in the interpretation of Arcesilaus’s attack, and reposition his critical arguments, in view of the fragmentary evidence, within the framework of an ontology of knowledge. (shrink)
The theory developed by Leucippus (5th cent. BCE), Democritus (470/460-380 BCE), and later Epicurus (341-271/270 BCE) and his school is commonly defined as atomistic materialism. According to this theory, matter is the fundamental principle of existent and ever-evolving reality, and it is constituted of atoms. But whereas for the first atomists atoms were not so much a substance (ousia) as an ideal form (idea) through which they could explain sensible bodies and their movement, with Epicurus atoms effectively turned into a (...) substance. From a mathematical theory we come to a physical conception. (shrink)
A common reading of the Cyrenaics is that they are a school of extreme hedonist presentists, recognising only the pleasure of the present moment, and advising against turning our attention to past or future pleasure or pain. Yet they have some strange advice which tells followers to anticipate future harms in order to lessen the unexpectedness of them when they occur. It’s a puzzle, then, how they can consistently hold the attitude they do to our concern with our present selves, (...) and yet endorse the practise of dwelling on possible future painful scenarios. To establish that this is a puzzle, though, we must first be convinced that the report is true. Cicero is our only clear source for the Cyrenaic advice, and scholars have noted reasons to be suspicious of the reliability of his report. I discuss these doubts, and why they ultimately fail to undermine Cicero’s testimony as a source. Defending Cicero as a source for Cyrenaic thought removes a barrier to taking seriously an aspect of Cyrenaic psychology which could radically alter our understanding of their views. (shrink)
This paper examines the relationship between the political thought of Plato and Xenophon, by positioning both as post-Socratic political theorists. It seeks to show that Xenophon and Plato examine similar themes and participate in a shared discourse in their later political thought, and in particular, that Plato is responding to Xenophon, with the Statesman exploring similar themes to Xenophon’s Cyropaedia, which itself responds to sections of Plato’s Republic. Both writers explore the themes of the shepherd king and the kairos as (...) attributes of the excellent leader, and both use temporality and political ontology to do so. (shrink)
Against the traditional reading of Cynic cosmopolitanism, this essay advances the thesis that Diogenes’ world citizenship is a positive claim supported by philosophical argument and philosophical example. Evidence in favor of this thesis is a new interpretation of Diogenes’ syllogistic argument concerning law (nomos) (D.L. 6.72). Important to the argument are an understanding of Diogenes’ philanthropic character and his moral imperative to ‘re-stamp the currency’. Whereas Socrates understands his care as attached specially to Athens, Diogenes’ philosophical mission and form of (...) care attach not to his native Sinope but to all humanity. An important result is that Diogenes’ Cynicism provides an ancient example of cosmopolitanism that is philanthropic, minimalistic, experimental, and utopian. (shrink)
Diogenes of Sinope, bilinen adıyla Diogenes ya da Sinoplu Diyojen’e yönelik yapılan bu çalışmada amacım, Dioegenes’in yaşamının, felsefi duruşunun ve benimsediği etik kuralların kapsamlı ve belgelenmiş bir şekilde sunulmasıdır. Diogenes’in hayatını ve öğretilerini güvenilir bir şekilde aktarmak aşırı derecede zordur, çünkü diğer antik filozoflardan ayrı olarak, onun yaşamına ilişkin güvenilir kaynaklar bulmak oldukça sınırlıdır. Ayrıca, fıçının içinde yaşayan bir Kinikli’ye yönelik ortaya konulmuş birçok kurmaca anekdot ile uğraşılması gerekmektedir. Güvenilir bilginin azlığı ve belgesiz atıfların yarattığı zorluklara rağmen, yine de birçok (...) kişinin hayalinde hayatta kalmayı başaran ünlü filozofun portresini ölümünden yirmi üç yüzyıl sonra yeniden inşa etmek mümkün gözükmektedir. Bu bağlamda, Diogenes’in yaşam tarzı ve felsefesine yönelik bilgiler verilecek, ardından temsil ettiği akım olan kinizmin temel öğretileri çeşitli kaynaklardan gösterilerek aktarılacaktır. Son olarak da, Diogenes’in Sinop kültürünün ve kültürel mirasımızın bir parçası olarak kabul edilmesinin mümkün olup olmadığı tartışılacaktır. (shrink)
RESUMEN En este trabajo nos proponemos analizar la ontología de distintas corrientes socráticas con un enfoque por Zonas de tensión dialógica. Antístenes y los megáricos Euclides y Estilpón despliegan modelos de negatividad que rechazan la afirmación de principios ontológicos capaces de sustentar lo real y su expresión en el lenguaje. Estas propuestas teóricas no solo ofrecen una perspectiva alternativa a la platónico-aristotélica, sino que influyen de manera decisiva, por medio de la interacción e influencia recíproca, en la construcción de las (...) variantes afirmativas de la época clásica. De este modo, la inclusión de las líneas socráticas permite poner en cuestión el diagnóstico heideggeriano que ve en la filosofía griega la sede del paradigma de la "metafísica de la presencia". La recuperación de las filosofías socráticas, habitualmente invisibilizadas bajo las figuras de Platón y Jenofonte, ofrece una oportunidad para redimensionar la Antigüedad clásica en función de propuestas ontológicas divergentes. ABSTRACT In this article we intend to analyze the ontology of different Socratic lines of thought, through an approach of Zones of dialogic tension. Antisthenes and the megarics Euclid and Stilpo develop ontologically negative conceptions that reject the affirmation of ontological principles capable of sustaining reality and its linguistic expression. This theoretical stance not only offers an alternative to the platonic-aristotelic approach towards ontology, but affects, by means of interaction and reciprocal influence, the constitution of those affirmative variants in classical Greek thought. Thereby, the inclusion of Socratic lines of thought allows us to question the heideggerian diagnosis of ancient Greek philosophy, inscribed solely in the paradigm of "metaphysics of presence". The recovery of the Socratic philosophers, usually obscured by the figures of Plato and Xenophon, offers an opportunity to redimension the period of classical antiquity through the study of its diverse ontological conceptions. (shrink)
Unlike mainstream Cyrenaics, the Annicereans deny that friendship is chosen only because of its usefulness. Instead, the wise person cares for her friend and endures pains for him because of her goodwill and love. Nonetheless, the Annicereans maintain that your own pleasure is the telos and that a friend’s happiness isn’t intrinsically choiceworthy. Their position appears internally inconsistent or to attribute doublethink to the wise person. But we can avoid these problems. We have good textual grounds to attribute to the (...) Annicereans a doctrine of “non-hedonic habits,” which allows them to abandon psychological hedonism while still maintaining hedonism regarding well-being. (shrink)
Socrates’ expert-analogies is frequent both in Plato’s dialogues and in the Socratic writings of Xenophon, and is also ascribed to Socrates by Aristotle and Aeschines. Socrates makes an analogy from a non-controversial expert (or an expertise) like the cobbler or ship-captain, to another (often controversial) expert (or expertise) like the statesman. This paper defends an interpretation of the expert-analogy as valid deductions. It infers from one type of expert (such as the ship-captain) to another type of expert (such as the (...) statesman), and the attribute inferred (for instance ‘should not be selected by lot’) belongs to these types of experts because they are experts. The general logical form, which makes no mention of the expert and which is valid in virtue of its form, infers from one or more species to another species of the same genus, and the attribute inferred is presupposed to belong as such to the genus and only accidentally to the species. (shrink)
Eudaimonia, happiness, is a property of a whole life, not of some portion of it. What can this mean for hedonists? For Epicurus, it is made possible by the mind’s capacity to enjoy one’s whole life from any temporal viewpoint: to relive past pleasures and enjoy future ones in anticipation, importantly including confidence in a serene closure. Enjoying your life is like enjoying a day as a whole, not least its sunset. Although pleasure is increased by greater duration (contrary to (...) a more favoured reading), and premature death therefore better avoided, the finitude of human life as such does not lessen its value, and even a premature death need not prevent a life’s being enjoyed as ‘complete’. In this chapter, the above interpretation is documented, explained, and contextualized in terms of Epicurus’ diametrical opposition to his contemporaries, the Cyrenaics. (shrink)
Focuses on the theories of the Epicureans and Cyrenaics in light of Plato's and Aristotle's criticisms of hedonism. Closes with a brief discussion of how the Pyrrhonian skeptical conception of the telos compares to the Epicureans'.
Cet article s’attache à comprendre si les cyrénaïques étaient susceptibles d’être attaqués moyennant l’objection d’inactivité et, si oui, comment ils auraient pu essayer d’y répondre et quel type de vision morale ils auraient pu essayer de défendre. En traitant de ces questions, j’évaluerai la légitimité de l’interprétation du scepticisme cyrénaïque offerte par Jules Vuillemin. Je confirmerai ainsi la plausibilité de son interprétation et développerai en même temps l’exploration de la nature et de la portée de la philosophie cyrénaïque.
Comme de nombreux penseurs antiques avant et après eux et contrairement à Socrate, Calliclès et Diogène ont déclaré avoir fondé leur éthique sur l’observation de la nature. Et pourtant, les deux discours normatifs qui sont tirés d’une nature que l’on pourrait a priori croire être la même sont on ne peut plus opposés. Calliclès croit que l’homme est appelé à dominer autrui ; Diogène pense plutôt qu’il doit se dominer lui-même ; le premier est un hédoniste débridé, le second croit (...) que le bonheur ne s’achète qu’au prix du sacrifice des désirs artificiels. Comment expliquer cette dichotomie ? Nous empruntons deux routes explicatives. D’abord, nous montrons que pour Calliclès et Diogène, la notion de nature non seulement diffère, mais est observée sous un angle différent. La première est celle des tyrans et de dieux anthropomorphes, la seconde, celle de petits animaux et de dieux autarciques. La première concerne la relation des hommes entre eux ; la seconde, celle de l’homme avec lui-même. Ensuite, nous exposons la différence des présupposés normatifs qui précèdent ou accompagnent l’observation de la nature ; nous contrastons, pour ce faire, les formes d’anticonventionnalisme et d’anti-intellectualisme défendues par Calliclès et Diogène. -/- SUMMARY. Like many ancient thinkers before and after them and contra Socrates, Callicles and Diogenes said they based their ethics on the observation of nature. And yet, the two normative discourses that are derived from nature that we might a priori believe to be the same could not be more opposed. Callicles believes that people are called to dominate others, Diogenes rather thinks people must dominate themselves. The first is an unbridled hedonist, the second believes that happiness can be bought only at the price of sacrificing artificial desires. How to explain this dichotomy? We take two explanatory routes. First, we show that for Callicles and Diogenes, the notion of nature not only differs but is observed from a different angle. The first one is the nature of tyrants and anthropomorphic gods, the second that of small animals and autarkic gods. The first focuses on the relationship between people, the second focuses on the relationship of a person with themselves. Secondly, we expose the difference in normative assumptions that precede or accompany the observation of nature; in order to do so, we contrast anticonventionalism and anti-intellectualism forms proper to both Callicles and Diogenes. (shrink)
Plato was a Socrates’ friend and disciple, but he wasn’t the only one. No doubt, Socrates had many followers, however, the majority of their work is lost. Was there any antagonism among his followers? Who succeeded in interpreting Socrates? Who could be considered as his successor? Of course, we don’t know if these questions emerged after the death of Socrates, but the Greek doxography suggests that there was a literary rivalry. As we underlined earlier, most unfortunately, we can’t examine all (...) of them thoroughly due to the lack of their work, but we can scrutinize Xenophon’s and Aristippus’ work. All of them, Plato, Xenophon and Aristippus, presented to a certain extent their ideas concerning education. Furthermore, they have not neglected the matter of gymnastikè, but what is exactly the role of physical education in their work? Are there any similarities or any differences between them? Since, Xenophon and Aristippus (as well as Plato) seem to be in favor of gymnastikè, it is necessary to understand its role. (shrink)
This paper focuses on two questions: (I) why do the Cyrenaics deny that we can gain knowledge concerning "external things," and (II) how wide-ranging is this denial? On the first question, I argue that the Cyrenaics are skeptical because of their contrast between the indubitable grasp we have of own affections, versus the inaccessibility of external things that cause these affections. Furthermore, this inaccessibility is due to our cognitive and perceptual limitations--it is an epistemological doctrine rooted in their psychology--and not (...) (pace Zilioli) due to any metaphysical theses regarding the external world. On the second question, I argue (pace Tsouna and Warren) that the scope of the Cyrenaics' skepticism is quite wide. Our reports on the Cyrenaics are inconsistent, but the most charitable and plausible reading results in attributing to the Cyrenaics skepticism not merely about the properties of external things (e.g., that the fire that warms me is really hot) of also of their nature and identity (e.g., that the object that warms me is a fire). However, it does not extend to skepticism regarding the existence of an external world. (shrink)
According to Xenophon, Socrates tried to persuade his associate Aristippus to moderate his excessive indulgence in wine, women, and food, arguing that only hard work can bring happiness. Aristippus wasn’t convinced. Instead, he and his followers espoused the most radical form of hedonism in ancient Western philosophy. Before the rise of the better known but comparatively ascetic Epicureans, the Cyrenaics pursued a way of life in which moments of pleasure, particularly bodily pleasure, held the highest value. In The Birth of (...) Hedonism, Kurt Lampe provides the most comprehensive account in any language of Cyrenaic ideas and behavior, revolutionizing the understanding of this neglected but important school of philosophy. -/- The Birth of Hedonism thoroughly and sympathetically reconstructs the doctrines and practices of the Cyrenaics, who were active between the fourth and third centuries BCE. The book examines not only Aristippus and the mainstream Cyrenaics, but also Hegesias, Anniceris, and Theodorus. Contrary to recent scholarship, the book shows that the Cyrenaics, despite giving primary value to discrete pleasurable experiences, accepted the dominant Greek philosophical belief that life-long happiness and the virtues that sustain it are the principal concerns of ethics. The book also offers the first in-depth effort to understand Theodorus’s atheism and Hegesias’s pessimism, both of which are extremely unusual in ancient Greek philosophy and which raise the interesting question of hedonism’s relationship to pessimism and atheism. Finally, the book explores the “new Cyrenaicism” of the nineteenth-century writer and classicist Walter Pater, who drew out the enduring philosophical interest of Cyrenaic hedonism more than any other modern thinker. (shrink)
Human lives are full of pleasures and pains. And humans are creatures that are able to think: to learn, understand, remember and recall, plan and anticipate. Ancient philosophers were interested in both of these facts and, what is more, were interested in how these two facts are related to one another. There appear to be, after all, pleasures and pains associated with learning and inquiring, recollecting and anticipating. We enjoy finding something out. We are pained to discover that a belief (...) we hold is false. We can think back and enjoy or be upset by recalling past events. And we can plan for and enjoy imagining pleasures yet to come. This book is about what Plato, Aristotle, the Epicureans and the Cyrenaics had to say about these relationships between pleasure and reason. (shrink)
This overview attempts to explain how we can come to an account of Cynicism and what that account should look like. My account suggests that Cynics are identified by living like Diogenes of Sinope, and that Diogenes' way of life is characterized by distinctive twists on three Socratic commitments. The three Socratic commitments are that success in life depends on excellence of the soul; that this excellence and success are a special achievement, requiring hard work; and that this work requires (...) deprecating mainstream values such as wealth, fame, and ordinary political power. Diogenes' construal of success emphasizes freedom and independence, and his construal of excellence emphasizes endurance and self-mastery. On his account, the work required to achieve these is strikingly unintellectual but difficult, and the deprecation of ordinary values is especially extreme. A few interpretive puzzles about Cynicism are tackled along the way, including whether Cynicism really counts as philosophy and whether Cynics are anti-social. (shrink)
El debate en torno a Aristipo de Cirene, cuya concepción de la felicidad coloca en el centro de la escena al placer, pone en tela de juicio las afirmaciones propias de aquellas éticas nucleadas bajo el epíteto de eudemonistas. Con el desplazamiento de la felicidad del sitial del fin, Aristipo reformula la dimensión ética tradicional: a través del ejercicio de la enkráteia, y lejos de caer en un relativismo subjetivista, intenta construir una ética que tenga como base un objetivismo gnoseológico. (...) Demostraremos, además, que al ejercicio de la enkráteia cirenaica subyace la noción de autosuficiencia ( autárkeia ) –entendida en términos aristotélicos– del individuo . Esto nos enfrentará, irremediablemente, a la noción aristotélica de felicidad (en estrecho vínculo con la noción de enkráteia ), la cual no comporta una noción de autosuficiencia individual sino que restringe la posibilidad de la autárkeia a la autosuficiencia de la pólis. (shrink)
In this paper I offer a reconstruction of the account of meaning and language the Cyrenaics appear to have defended on the basis of a famous passage of Sextus, as well as showing the philosophical parentage of that account.
In this contribution, I aim to show how locating the Platonic dialogues in the intellectual context of their own time can illuminate their philosophical content. I seek to show, with reference to a specific dialogue (the Theaetetus), how Plato responds to other thinkers of his time, and also to bring out how, by reconstructing Plato’s response, we can gain deeper insight into the way that Plato shapes the structure and form of his argument in the dialogue. In particular, I argue (...) that the subtler thinkers (hoi kompsoteroi) discussed by Plato’s Socrates at Tht. 156a3 are Aristippus and the early Cyrenaics. (Recent scholars, such as Giannantoni and Tsouna, have rejected this identification, which was earlier defended by Schleiermacher, Grote, Zeller and Mondolfo.) Further, I claim that, once we recognise that the subtler thinkers are most likely to be the early Cyrenaics, we can make better sense of the scope and content of the arguments Plato puts forward at Tht. 156a - 160e (especially 156a - 157c). Also, I suggest that this identification helps us to understand a crucial part of Tht. 184b - 186e. Here Plato, in exploring the account of perception offered at 156a - 157c, uses the metaphor of the Wooden Horse to illustrate the conception of perception that he attributes to thinkers such as Protagoras and, in my view, the early Cyrenaics, who maintain that knowledge is a form of perception. (shrink)
A unique edition of the sayings of Diogenes, whose biting wit and eccentricity inspired the anecdotes that express his Cynic philosophy. It includes the accounts of his immediate successors, such as Crates and Hipparchia, and the witty moral preacher Bion. The contrasting teachings of the Cyrenaics and the hedonistic Aristippos complete the volume.
The Cyrenaic school of philosophy (named after its founder Aristippus’ native city of Cyrene in North Africa) flourished in the fifth and fourth centuries BCE. Ugo Zilioli’s book provides the first book-length introduction to the school in English. The book begins by introducing the main figures of the Cyrenaic school beginning with Aristippus and by setting them into their historical context. Once the reader is familiar with those figures and with the genealogy of the school, the book offers an overview (...) of ancient and modern interpretations of the Cyrenaics, to provide readers with alternative accounts of the doctrines they endorsed and of the role they played in the context of ancient thought. Finally, the book offers a reconstruction of Cyrenaic philosophy and shows how the ethical side of their speculation connected with the epistemology and ontology they endorsed and that, as a result, the Cyrenaics were able to offer a quite sophisticated philosophy. Indeed, Zilioli demonstrates that they represented, in ancient philosophy, an important and original metaphysical position and alternative to the kind of realism endorsed by Plato and Aristotle. (shrink)