Apr 13 • 21M

Matthew Sharpe on Stoicism, the Enlightenment, and Civility

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Episode details

Matthew Sharpe is Associate Professor of philosophy at Deakin University, Australia. He has taught philosophy for over two decades, and is the author of multiple books, including most recently Stoicism, Bullying, and Beyond (in press, 2022), The Other Enlightenment (in press, 2022), and (with Michael Ure), Philosophy as a Way of Life: History, Dimensions, Directions (Bloomsbury, 2021).  He is also the cotranslator of Pierre Hadot, Selected Writings: Philosophy as Practice (Bloomsbury, 2021), and someone whose work continues to centre upon ancient philosophy as a way or ways of life, and the ways it can still speak to people transformatively today.

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  • “Consider the consequences if we make politics war. In war, it is wise to lie and deceive the enemy…The point of war after all is to win by destroying one’s foes, not to engage in a shared searched for something higher of larger.”

  • “To understand why there is so much anger in our communities, we have to put ourselves in the shoes of those who feel defeated, excluded, cheated, or at risk…What reason do they have to admire their leaders?”

  • “The Stoics believed in the natural equality of all peoples…Zeno defined the city (polis) in such a way as to include any citizen or non-citizen who resided in the place.”

  • “Teach them better and make it appear better to them, but don't you be angry with them.” —Marcus Aurelius