Philosophy as a way of life: Foucault and Hadot

Philosophy and Social Criticism 31 (5-6):609-622 (2005)
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Michel Foucault surveyed the history of Western philosophy in terms of the Delphic ‘Know thyself’ and the Socratic ‘care of the self’. The former generates academic philosophy as we know it today whereas the latter conceives of philosophy as a ‘way of life’. At issue are competing notions of ‘truth’ and the philosophical relevance of the discursive/nondiscursive domains. Comparing this account with a similar but distinct reading of the same Greek texts by Greco-Roman historian Pierre Hadot, I underscore the ‘existentialist’ tenor of this distinction and assess the challenges and liabilities of pursuing philosophy as a ‘way of life’.



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Thomas R. Flynn
Emory University

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Existentialism is a Humanism.Sartre Jean-Paul - 1996 - Yale University Press.

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