How to Be Free: An Ancient Guide to the Stoic Life
Anthony Long (Classics) presents a new edition of Epictetus’s celebrated guide to the Stoic philosophy of life. Born a slave, the Roman Stoic philosopher Epictetus (c. 55–135 AD) taught that mental freedom is supreme, since it can liberate one anywhere, even in a prison. For Epictetus, freedom is not a human right or a political prerogative but a psychological and ethical achievement, a gift that we alone can bestow on ourselves. How to Be Free (Princeton, 2018) features new translations alongside the original Greek, an introduction that sets Epictetus in context and describes the importance of Stoic freedom today, and a glossary of key words and concepts.
Long is joined by Timothy Hampton (Comparative Literature and French; Townsend Center director). After a brief discussion of the book, they open the floor for discussion.