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Cynics has 77 ratings and 13 reviews. Leo said: Very good introduction to Cynicism (of the ancient kind, a school of philosophy having very little to do. William Desmond, Cynics, Acumen, , pp, $ (pbk), ISBN Reviewed by John Moles, Newcastle University. Far from being pessimistic or nihilistic, as modern uses of the term “cynic” suggest, the ancient Cynics were astonishingly optimistic regarding human nature.

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Failure to acknowledge such basic material produces further confusions: This is another very productive chapter, which shows how Cynicism relates to anarchism, democracy, and monarchy. Crews rated it really liked it Jan 22, Vladimir rated it really liked it Oct 18, We get to see the development of Cynical thought through its historical beginnings which are a bit controversial, either Antisthenes is the first Cynic, or Diogenes is through the classical Greek period, the empires of the Hellenistic and roman eras, and finally get a discussion of the influences of Cynical thought on thinkers after the disappearance of Very good introduction to Cynicism of the ancient kind, a school of philosophy having very little to do with the modern meaning of the word.

Preview — Cynics by William Desmond.

You can remove the unavailable item s now or we’ll automatically remove it at Checkout. Although references Gigante’s Cinismo e EpicureismoI would have liked consideration of the superficially more surprising Cynic influence on the Epicureans, which seems to me considerable, despite the fact that Epicureans, from Epicurus on, reviled the Cynics, presumably on the principle of ‘that man did me a good turn ten years ago and I’ve hated him ever since’.

Feeney [ eds ], Traditions and Contexts in the Poetry of Horace [], 53 ff. That work, however, should come at the beginning, because it is also key for understanding all Diogenic Cynicism and of wil,iam of its developments and modifications. This later discussion covers likenesses in a critical fashion being careful not too far reaching conclusions and finding them in early Christianity where we also find heavy criticism resmond at least some aspects of Cynicism and later in the renaissance with the renewed interest in classical Greek thought besides the church endorsed philosophy of Plato and Aristotle.


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The term has its origins in the Greek word for dog, as the philosophers lived in a fashion, out in the open and shamelessly, that was pejoratively linked with the animal, which Greeks desmpnd was sort of filthy, rather than man’s williaj friend.

There are no discussion topics on this book yet. You’ll learn all that and much more in this easy-to-read introduction to a sadly neglected and misunderstood school of philosophical thought.

Lastly, this book has annoying references. Willuam coverage is immense. Oct 27, Bima Putra rated it it was ok.

Lists with This Book. December 5, Imprint: If you aren’t well versed in ancient literature, parathetical references like Aug, De civ.

Desmond points out that in contrast to the modern cynic, who is essentially negative and pessimistic regarding human nature, the ancient Cynic eilliam optimistic regarding human potentiality to thrive. All and all, it’s an edifying read.

desmojd An interesting look at this chapter of history but I’m glad to society on some levels has moved past it. Yet at the same time they dwsmond very inventive with literary styles and word play. Here Desmond shows his fluency and the depth of his knowledge of the tradition. Books Digital Products Journals. Jan 20, Cynical rated it really liked it. William Desmond’s new book offers an introduction to the ideas, practices, and influences that have been associated with the rather diverse and disparate group of thinkers called Cynics.


Cynics by William Desmond

Sean McAleer rated it really liked it Jun 02, Refresh and try again. At Kobo, we try to ensure that published reviews do not contain rude or profane language, spoilers, or any of our reviewer’s personal information.

American Journal of Philology. University of California Press, Ancient Cynics and their times. Cynics Ancient Philosophies by William Desmond. Account Options Sign in.

Cynics – William D. Desmond – Google Books

The fourth chapter offers a long, general discussion of fate and chance which is used to set up a discussion of Cynic self-sufficiency. The pages on claimed relationships between Cynicism and early Christianity should have ‘main-texted’ diatribe and Cynic influence on Paul convincingly expounded by Malherbe, referenced on Trimalchio and Fortunata are presented as anti-Cynics in contrast to Encolpius and Aschyltus who are called “two Cynic-like wanderers” Bryn Mawr Classical Review What is more important … is the personality of the man’ as if this could be established independently?

Contents Ancient Cynics and their times. Desmond has done a service by making their thought more accessible.

Introductions may perhaps legitimately flag arguable conclusions, though in the case ycnics such a controversial topic as Cynicism an initial tabula rasa would in my view have been the better course. Although there must have been numerous wandering Cynics, many others became more famous as literary Cynics or admirers of cynic ideals rather than persistent and poverty-stricken wanderers.

The other main criticism is stylistic.