Forgan Smith (building 1), The University of Queensland, St Lucia
Venue: Forgan Smith (building 1), The University of Queensland, St Lucia.

Chrysippus' Dog and the Little Pot of Cheese

Stoic and Epicurean Thoughts about Impressions, the Passions, and Human Freedom.

This paper explores the tension in Greek thought following the demise of Aristotle between the desire to treat the senses as a guide to truth and action and the recognition of the power of the senses to deceive us. The debates which ensued had ramifications for how philosophers construed our relationship to the world, to each other and the scope of human freedom. Through a revival of interest in these debates in the early modern period, which in turn influenced our own, we remain intellectually engaged with these ancient thinkers. Chrysippus' dog can still, in other words, instruct us in how to manage things outside our control and Epicurus' pot of cheese of the tranquillity of mind attached to simple pleasures.

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