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Philosophy as a Way of Life in Late Antiquity

Chairs: Gary Gabor, Hamline University ( D.M. Hutchinson, St Olaf College (

A unique feature of ancient philosophy that sets it apart from modern and contemporary philosophy is the emphasis it places on philosophy as a way of life. Pierre Hadot (Philosophy as a Way of Life (1995), What is Ancient Philosophy (2002) et al.) has introduced the framework for understanding how ancient philosophers conceived of philosophy as a way of life, and John Cooper (Pursuits of Wisdom: Six Ways of Life in Ancient Philosophy (2012)) has elevated the rigor by which reason could be understood as providing the intellectual basis and motivating force for living a good life; however their work has by no means exhausted the topic.

The aim of this panel is to continue the discussion began by Hadot and Cooper, with particular historical attention to late antiquity. We invite submissions on individual philosophers, groups of philosophers, or schools ranging from Epictetus (1st century CE) to Simplicius (6th century CE), which deal with themes related to how philosophy provides a complete way of life for its adherents.

Please send submissions to both panel organizers with the subject heading “Philosophy as a Way of Life ISNS 2013.”