The Good Life in Ancient Ethics

June 3, 2020

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Columbia University


University of Groningen

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Starting with Socrates, Greek and Roman philosophers have extensively explored the nature of the good life, treating the question of what our life as a whole should be like not only as the entry point of ethical reflection but also as an essential part of philosophy as such. Indeed, much recent scholarship has heightened our awareness of the fact that for the ancients, philosophy itself was meant to inform one’s way of life.     

To bring together scholars interested in this subject, the History of Philosophy department organizes a one-day workshop that will take place on Wednesday June 3, 2020 at the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Groningen, the Netherlands. 

The workshop’s keynote-speaker is professor Katja Maria Vogt (Columbia University), who has published widely in ancient philosophy and whose latest book—Desiring the Good: Ancient Proposals and Contemporary Theory (Oxford University Press, 2017)—defends a novel and distinctive approach in ethics that is inspired by ancient philosophy. Ethics, according to this approach, starts from one question (‘what is the good for human beings?’) and its most immediate answer (‘a well-going human life’). Ethics thus conceived is broader than moral philosophy; it includes a range of topics in psychology and metaphysics.      

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Shaun Miller
Marquette University

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