Epicureanism after the generation of its founders has been characterised as dogmatic, uncreative and static. But this volume brings together work from leading classicists and philosophers that demonstrates the persistent interplay in the school between historical and contemporary influences from outside the school and a commitment to the founders' authority. The interplay begins with Epicurus himself, who made arresting claims of intellectual independence, yet also admitted to taking over important ideas from predecessors, and displayed more receptivity than is usually thought to those of his contemporaries. The same principles of autonomy and openness figure importantly in the three major areas of focus in these essays: theology, politics and the emotions.
Jeffrey Fish is Associate Professor of Classics at Baylor University. He has edited Philodemus' On the Good King According to Homer (forthcoming) and is the author of several articles related to the Herculaneum papyri and ancient Homeric scholarship. With Kirk Sanders he is co-editing The Oxford Handbook to Epicureanism. Kirk R. Sanders is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and the Classics at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He has authored numerous articles in ancient philosophy, and with Jeffrey Fish is currently co-editing The Oxford Handbook to Epicureanism.
1. Introduction; 2. Autodidact and student: on the relationship of authority and autonomy in Epicurus and the Epicurean tradition Michael Erler; 3. Epicurus' theological innatism David Sedley; 4. Epicurus on the gods David Konstan; 5. Not all politicians are Sisyphus: what Roman Epicureans were taught about politics Jeffrey Fish; 6. Epicurean virtues, Epicurean friendship: Cicero vs. the Herculaneum papyri David Armstrong; 7. Cicero's use and abuse of Epicurean theology Holger Essler; 8. The necessity of anger in Philodemus' 'On Anger' Elizabeth Asmis; 9. Philodemus, Seneca, and Plutarch on anger Voula Tsouna; 10. Philodemus and the fear of premature death Kirk R. Sanders.