Ethical Perspectives 22 (4):601-634 (2015)

Konrad Banicki
Jagiellonian University
The practical aspect of ancient philosophy has been recently made a focus of renewed metaphilosophical investigation. After a brief presentation of three accounts of this kind developed by Martha Nussbaum, Pierre Hadot, and Michel Foucault, the model of the therapeutic argument developed by Nussbaum is called into question from the perspectives offered by her French colleagues, who emphasize spiritual exercise (Hadot) or the care of the self (Foucault). The ways in which the account of Nussbaum can be defended are then discussed, including both a ‘negative’ defense, i.e. the indication of the weaknesses of Hadot and Foucault’s proposals, and a ‘positive’ one focused on the points in which Nussbaum can convincingly address doubts about her metaphilosophical account. In response to these analyses, some further remarks made by Hadot and Foucault are discussed in order to demonstrate that their accounts are not as distant from Nussbaum after all. Finally, a recent metaphilosophical study by John Sellars together with a therapeutic (medical) model developed by the author of the present article are suggested as providing a framework for potential reconciliation between all three accounts discussed and a resource for further metaphilosophical studies.
Keywords Foucault  care of the self  Hadot  spiritual exercises  technologies of the self  Nussbaum  philosophy as therapy  therapeutic philosophy  Sellars  ancient philosophy
Categories (categorize this paper)
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

View all 25 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Between Medicine and Rhetoric: Therapeutic Arguments in Roman Stoicism.Krzysztof Łapiński - 2019 - Argument: Biannual Philosophical Journal 9 (1):11-24.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Philosophy as Therapy: Towards a Conceptual Model.Konrad Banicki - 2014 - Philosophical Papers 43 (1):7-31.
The Stoic Samurai.Ted M. Preston - 2003 - Asian Philosophy 13 (1):39 – 52.
Plotinus or the Simplicity of Vision.Pierre Hadot - 1993 - University of Chicago Press.
What is Ancient Philosophy?Pierre Hadot - 2002 - Harvard University Press.
Skeptic Purgatives: Therapeutic Arguments in Ancient Skepticism.Martha Craven Nussbaum - 1991 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 29 (4):521-557.
Foucault and His Interlocutors.Arnold Ira Davidson (ed.) - 1997 - University of Chicago Press.


Added to PP index

Total views
839 ( #8,268 of 2,507,378 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
99 ( #7,483 of 2,507,378 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes