Squaring the Epicurean Circle: Friendship and Happiness in the Garden

Ancient Philosophy 37 (1):153-168 (2017)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Epicurean ethics has been subject to withering ancient and contemporary criticism for the supposed irreconcilability of Epicurus’s emphatic endorsement of friendship and his equally clear and striking ethical egoism. Recently, Matthew Evans (2004) has suggested that the key to a plausible Epicurean response to these criticisms must begin by understanding why friendship is valuable for Epicurus. In the first section of this paper I develop Evans’ suggestion further. I argue that a shared conception of the human telos and of what is required to attain it structures the confidence that characterizes friendship. In the second part of the paper I return to two contemporary criticisms of Epicurean friendship. The first criticism focuses on the problem of free riders. The second criticism points to a seeming inconsistency in Epicurean doctrine. I suggest that both criticisms can be adequately addressed once we understand Epicurean friendship in greater depth.

Links

PhilArchive

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Is Epicurean Friendship Altruistic?Tim O'Keefe - 2001 - Apeiron 34 (4):269 - 305.
Epicurean Virtues, Epicurean Friendship: Cicero vs. the Herculaneum Papyri.David Armstrong - 2011 - In Jeffrey Fish & Kirk R. Sanders (eds.), Epicurus and the Epicurean Tradition. Cambridge University Press. pp. 105-128.
Reconciling Justice and Pleasure in Epicurean Contractarianism.John J. Thrasher - 2013 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 16 (2):423-436.
Was Gassendi an Epicurean?Monte Ransome Johnson - 2003 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 20 (4):339 - 360.
The Advantages of Civic Friendship.Joyce L. Jenkins - 1999 - Journal of Philosophical Research 24:459-471.
The Advantages of Civic Friendship.Joyce L. Jenkins - 1999 - Journal of Philosophical Research 24:459-471.
Why virtual friendship is no genuine friendship.Barbro Fröding & Martin Peterson - 2012 - Ethics and Information Technology 14 (3):201-207.
The Annicerean Cyrenaics on Friendship and Habitual Good Will.Tim O’Keefe - 2017 - Phronesis: A Journal for Ancient Philosophy 62 (3):305-318.
Between Advantage and Virtue: Aristotle's Theory of Political Friendship. Irrera - 2005 - History of Political Thought 26 (4):565-585.

Analytics

Added to PP
2017-06-29

Downloads
808 (#10,202)

6 months
25 (#47,796)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Benjamin Rossi
Duke University

Citations of this work

Expressing Tranquility.Alex R. Gillham - 2021 - Forum Philosophicum: International Journal for Philosophy 26 (1):143-162.

Add more citations

References found in this work

The Morality of Happiness.Julia Annas - 1993 - Oxford University Press.
Epicurean Justice.John Armstrong - 1997 - Phronesis 42 (3):324-334.
Epicurus on the Telos.Jeffrey Purinton - 1993 - Phronesis 38 (3):281 - 320.
Epicurus: An Introduction.J. M. Rist - 1972 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 35 (2):391-391.

View all 12 references / Add more references