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The Structured Self in Hellenistic and Roman Thought

The Structured Self in Hellenistic and Roman Thought

Paperback

By (author) Christopher Gill

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Hardback $212.31
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Format: Paperback | 544 pages
  • Dimensions: 156mm x 233mm x 31mm | 825g
  • Publication date: 15 June 2009
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 019956437X
  • ISBN 13: 9780199564378
  • Sales rank: 900,125

Product description

Christopher Gill offers a new analysis of what is innovative in Hellenistic - especially Stoic and Epicurean - philosophical thinking about selfhood and personality. His wide-ranging discussion of Stoic and Epicurean ideas is illustrated by a more detailed examination of the Stoic theory of the passions and a new account of the history of this theory. His study also tackles issues about the historical study of selfhood and the relationship between philosophy and literature, especially the presentation of the collapse of character in Plutarch's Lives, Senecan tragedy, and Virgil's Aeneid. As all Greek and Latin is translated, this book presents original ideas about ancient concepts of personality to a wide range of readers.

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Author information

Christopher Gill is Professor of Ancient Thought at the University of Exeter.

Review quote

Gill's book is an important achievement. The author combines the skills of the classical scholar with philosophical sensitivity to argue for a bold and general thesis, while still maintaining attention to detail...Gill's book deserves to have a wide appeal... George Karamanolis RHIZAI Christopher Gill's masterful treatment of the notion of the self in Hellenistic and Roman thought manages to shed remarkable clarity on a complex and fascinating field, even while challenging a prevailing view of the nature of the self in post-classical ancient Greek philosophy This is fascinating work, bringing out the strengths of one of the richest periods in philosophical thought about the person, using insights from modern philosophy merely to clarify, rather than to shape, the philosophical agenda. It is also a very good read. Sylvia Berryman, Journal of the History of Philosophy Gill grapples with some of the toughest problems in ancient psychology, and does so with unusual power and authority This careful and historically grounded analysis shows that the ancient philosophical world held a conception of the person very different from our own and thereby how much their largely alien conception can contribute to contemporary debates. This is a book to be welcomed by ancient philosophy specialists and contemporary enquirers alike. Brad Inwood, Philosophical Quarterly This is the work of a scholar who has fundamentally shaped an entire line of enquiry into human psychology, the passions, selfhood, character, and personhood in ancient philosophy. Gretchen Reydams-Schils, Classical Philology This is a thoughtful and important book. David Konstan, Journal of Hellenic Studies The admirable combination of historical analysis and theoretical arguments that characterize Gill's work will make his book an indispensable reference point for future studies. Mauro Bonazzi, Elenchos, translated from Italian

Table of contents

Introduction ; I. THE STRUCTURED SELF IN STOICISM AND EPICUREANISM ; 1. Psychophysical Holism in Stoicism and Epicureanism ; 2. Psychological Holism and Socratic Ideals ; 3. Development and the Structured Self ; II. THE UNSTRUCTURED SELF: STOIC PASSIONS AND THE RECEPTION OF PLATO ; 4. Competing Readings of Stoic Passions ; 5. Competing Readings of Platonic Psychology ; III. THEORETICAL ISSUES AND LITERARY RECEPTION ; 6. Issues in Selfhood: Subjectivity and Objectivity ; 7. Literary Reception: Structured and Unstructured Selves