Ancient Greeks on the Human Condition

This book examines the writings of four ancient Greeks-Homer, Thucydides, Euripides, and Aristophanes.

Ancient Greeks on the Human Condition

This book examines the writings of four ancient Greeks-Homer, Thucydides, Euripides, and Aristophanes. Each of these four individuals represents a different approach toward the human condition, ranging from the heroic and tragic to the comic and absurd. This book focuses on how the human condition can best be understood within the framework of these four perspectives by examining the major contributions of these Greek writers, whether in the form of epic (Homer's Iliad), history (Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War), or drama (the plays of Euripides and Aristophanes). These various perceptions of Greek thought illuminate our understanding of what it means to be fully human. By focusing on the concepts of the heroic, tragic, comic, and absurd, we can see how these ancient Greek authors still provide key insights for us today as they clarify those timeless features that define the human condition.

Ancient Greeks on the Human Condition

As for Plato's student Aristotle, his claim that “man is the only rational animal” seemed to define the human condition as one that is at least capable of being governed by rational principles. Perhaps one cause for Euripides' absurdist ...

Ancient Greeks on the Human Condition

This book examines the writings of four ancient Greeks-Homer, Thucydides, Euripides, and Aristophanes. Each of these four individuals represents a different approach toward the human condition, ranging from the heroic and tragic to the comic and absurd. This book focuses on how the human condition can best be understood within the framework of these four perspectives by examining the major contributions of these Greek writers, whether in the form of epic (Homer's Iliad), history (Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War), or drama (the plays of Euripides and Aristophanes). These various perceptions of Greek thought illuminate our understanding of what it means to be fully human. By focusing on the concepts of the heroic, tragic, comic, and absurd, we can see how these ancient Greek authors still provide key insights for us today as they clarify those timeless features that define the human condition.

The Human Condition

The book sets about distinguishing between our different activities under the categories of “labor”, “work”, and “action” – each of which Arendt carefully redefines as a different level of active engagement with the world.

The Human Condition

Hannah Arendt’s 1958 The Human Condition was an impassioned philosophical reconsideration of the goals of being human. In its arguments about the kind of lives we should lead and the political engagement we should strive for, Arendt’s interpretative skills come to the fore, in a brilliant display of what high-level interpretation can achieve for critical thinking. Good interpretative thinkers are characterised by their ability to clarify meanings, question accepted definitions and posit good, clear definitions that allow their other critical thinking skills to take arguments deeper and further than most. In many ways, The Human Condition is all about definitions. Arendt’s aim is to lay out an argument for political engagement and active participation in society as the highest goals of human life; and to this end she sets about defining a hierarchy of ways of living a “vita activa,” or active life. The book sets about distinguishing between our different activities under the categories of “labor”, “work”, and “action” – each of which Arendt carefully redefines as a different level of active engagement with the world. Following her clear and careful laying out of each word’s meaning, it becomes hard to deny her argument for the life of “action” as the highest human goal.

The Human Condition

This new edition, published to coincide with the sixtieth anniversary of its original publication, contains Margaret Canovan’s 1998 introduction and a new foreword by Danielle Allen.

The Human Condition

The past year has seen a resurgence of interest in the political thinker Hannah Arendt, “the theorist of beginnings,” whose work probes the logics underlying unexpected transformations—from totalitarianism to revolution. A work of striking originality, The Human Condition is in many respects more relevant now than when it first appeared in 1958. In her study of the state of modern humanity, Hannah Arendt considers humankind from the perspective of the actions of which it is capable. The problems Arendt identified then—diminishing human agency and political freedom, the paradox that as human powers increase through technological and humanistic inquiry, we are less equipped to control the consequences of our actions—continue to confront us today. This new edition, published to coincide with the sixtieth anniversary of its original publication, contains Margaret Canovan’s 1998 introduction and a new foreword by Danielle Allen. A classic in political and social theory, The Human Condition is a work that has proved both timeless and perpetually timely.

The Human Condition

The ancient Greeks, as inquisitive with regard to nature as they were with respect to almost anything else, were not satisfied with this state of affairs and tried to understand how the living world works. The Greek pre-Socratic ...

The Human Condition

Over a very short period, only a few hundred years, our understanding of the cosmos, our planet Earth, the evolution of life on it, and the beginnings of our very own human endeavor have radically changed. These revolutions in science and technology have dramatically altered our societies in many ways. For quite some time it seemed as if our planets resources were unlimited. Today we know that this is not the case. Human civilizations are shaping our planets future in ways that have profound consequences for all other life on Earth as well as for us. We need to reflect broadly on what defines our human condition if we wish our societies to be successful in navigating a future that cannot be just ours but must include the broad diversity of life on Earth without which humankind will not survive. This book tells the story of how we discovered the universe, how we learned about our planet and the life evolving on it, how humanity emerged from pre-history, and what some of the future of our civilizations could hold.

Jonah and the Human Condition

The ancient Greeks had varying views of toil and pain as elements of the human condition. The Greek word πόνος comes or war, and animals did not devour one another. There were no governments and no possession of property by males, ...

Jonah and the Human Condition

Stuart Lasine examines all aspects of the human situation and condition in Yahweh's cosmos as depicted in the Hebrew Bible. As his starting point Lasine uses the phrase “the human condition”, which has been used to describe features of existence with which every person must cope, in ways which vary according to their culture, their situation within that culture, and their personality. In particular the most consistent factor that is basic to the human condition is mortality and, in the biblical context, the sometimes difficult relationship between the creator God and humankind. An examination of this forms the basis of Lasine's study, which draws analytical tools from several disciplines, including literary theory, psychology and philosophy. In the first part of the book Lasine examines a number of relevant biblical texts which display different aspects of the human condition. Part two engages in a detailed case study of one human life-situation, that of the prophet Jonah. Finally, Lasine draws together his conclusions about life and death in Yahweh's cosmos, both for characters within the world of the scriptural text and for present-day readers of the Hebrew Bible.

The Human Condition

All secular views face a problem that has been recognized at least since the ancient Greeks struggled with it. If human beings are part of nature, then we are subject to the laws of which science aims to provide ever deeper ...

The Human Condition

The Human Condition is a response to the growing disenchantment in the Western world with contemporary life. Kekes offers answers to some of the deepest questions about the human condition, such as the meaning of life, the basis of morality, our vulnerability to the contingencies of lives, the prevalence of evil, and the sources of values we prize. He defends a realistic view of the human condition that rejects both facile optimism and gloomy pessimism.While acknowledging that the scheme of things is indifferent to our fortunes, Kekes shows that we nevertheless have the resources to improve our lives.

The Human Condition

This new edition, published to coincide with the fortieth anniversary of its original publication, contains an improved and expanded index and a new introduction by noted Arendt scholar Margaret Canovan which incisively analyzes the book's ...

The Human Condition

A work of striking originality bursting with unexpected insights, The Human condition is in many respects more relevant now than when it first appeared in 1958. In her study of the state of modern humanity, Hannah Arendt considers humankind from the perspective of the actions of which it is capable. The problems Arendt identified then--diminishing human agency and political freedom, the paradox that as human powers increase through technological and humanistic inquiry, we are less equipped to control the consequences of our actions--continue to confront us today. This new edition, published to coincide with the fortieth anniversary of its original publication, contains an improved and expanded index and a new introduction by noted Arendt scholar Margaret Canovan which incisively analyzes the book's argument and examines its present relevance. A classic in political and social theory, The Human condition is a work that has proved both timeless and perpetually timely.

Tragic Views of the Human Condition

Oudemans and Lardinois do not, in my opinion, sufficiently account for the crucial long-term changes in the Greek view of the human being from Homer to Aristotle, of which the tragic genre is so symptomatic. Fortunately, they do account ...

Tragic Views of the Human Condition

Can tragic views of the human condition as known to Westerners through Greek and Shakespearean tragedy be identified outside European culture, in the Indian culture of Hindu epic drama? In what respects can the Mahabharata epic's and the Bhagavadgita's views of the human condition be called 'tragic' in the Greek and Shakespearean senses of the word? Tragic views of the human condition are primarily embedded in stories. Only afterwards are these views expounded in theories of tragedy and in philosophical anthropologies. Minnema identifies these embedded views of human nature by discussing the ways in which tragic stories raise a variety of anthropological issues-issues such as coping with evil, suffering, war, death, values, power, sacrifice, ritual, communication, gender, honour, injustice, knowledge, fate, freedom. Each chapter represents one cluster of tragic issues that are explored in terms of their particular (Greek, English, Indian) settings before being compared cross-culturally. In the end, the underlying question is: are Indian views of the human condition very different from Western views?

Love Sex and the Human Condition

The ancient Greeks celebrated the body, held athletic games in high regard, and today's Olympic games are a remnant of the old Greek attitude. In ancient Greece, a professional philosopher might enter the Olympic games as a wrestler, ...

Love  Sex  and the Human Condition

This book guides us into being fully alive by investing our sex and power drives with love and reason - and then expressing them boldly in the world.

To Relieve the Human Condition

the analogies between the ancient Greek estimation of the pursuit of bodily perfection and our own were not so strong . But if the analogies are so strong , why has contemporary bioethics not taken up Plato's agenda ?

To Relieve the Human Condition

Argues that standard forms of bioethics support the technological utopianism of medicine. Puts forth an alternative agenda arguing that the task of bioethics is to explore the moral significance of the body as it is expressed in the discourse and practice of moral and religious traditions.

Looking for the Ancient Greeks

Aristotle's view of human character, of personal, social, and political virtues and vices as described in his Nicomachean Ethics and Politics, is a complex, nuanced, and systematic account of human nature and human flourishing.

Looking for the Ancient Greeks

This book is a response to Antonio Damasio’s Looking for Spinoza: Joy, Sorrow and the Feeling Brain. Damasio, a prominent neuroscientist, begins by explaining what the latest discoveries in the neurosciences tell us about human psychology. He rejects the two prominent models of human psychology since the Western Enlightenment, the blank slate and dualism. Instead, says Damasio, we now know that the brain and body are completely integrated through a complex system of neural maps. Damasio’s recognition of the complete unity of body, brain and mind leads him to the conclusion that we have to develop ideas and ideas of ideas and use them to reform our neural maps. This book presents Damasio’s own ideas about the most “serious” questions in life that we ought to use to reform ourselves and our societies, including homeostasis; spirituality; feelings; suffering and death; the value of religious traditions; and the value of the philosophical path to God among others. The book presents additional positions on the same serious questions from perspectives that it is hoped Damasio will consider adding to or, in some cases, replacing, his position. Most of the book is a discussion of many aspects of Ancient Greek culture, showing how it developed into a complex cultural system that aimed to create exactly the kind of integrated system of neural maps that Damasio claims is so important for us today. As such, this book strives to contribute to our collective need to reform our system of education based on our new understanding of the nature of the human psyche.

Public Space and Political Experience

laws provide boundaries, the space between human beings that allows for action rather than limiting action. She introduces this notion in her discussion of the ancient Greeks in The Human Condition: “To them [the Greeks], the laws, ...

Public Space and Political Experience

Citizens in the contemporary world have become alienated from politics because they conceive of it as an instrumental activity. David Antonini argues that Hannah Arendt's thought can help us recover meaningful political experience: a distinct experience of politics in which citizens can speak and act together.

Ancient Greece and China Compared

6 Human and Animal in Early China and Greece lisa raphals Some forty years ago, Jean-Pierre Vernant argued that the ancient Greeks defined the human condition as one element of a triadic relationship between animals and gods, ...

Ancient Greece and China Compared

Ancient Greece and China Compared is a pioneering, methodologically sophisticated set of studies, bringing together scholars who all share the conviction that the sustained critical comparison and contrast between ancient societies can bring to light significant aspects of each that would be missed by focusing on just one of them. The topics tackled include key issues in philosophy and religion, in art and literature, in mathematics and the life sciences (including gender studies), in agriculture, city planning and institutions. The volume also analyses how to go about the task of comparing, including finding viable comparanda and avoiding the trap of interpreting one culture in terms appropriate only to another. The book is set to provide a model for future collaborative and interdisciplinary work exploring what is common between ancient civilisations, what is distinctive of particular ones, and what may help to account for the latter.

The Passions

No cognitive neuroscientist should ever conduct an experiment in the domain of the emotions without reading this book, twice. Parashkev Nachev, Institute of Neurology, UCL There is not a slack moment in the whole of this impressive work.

The Passions

A survey of astonishing breadth and penetration. No cognitive neuroscientist should ever conduct an experiment in the domain of the emotions without reading this book, twice. Parashkev Nachev, Institute of Neurology, UCL There is not a slack moment in the whole of this impressive work. With his remarkable facility for making fine distinctions, and his commitment to lucidity, Peter Hacker has subtly characterized those emotions such as pride, shame, envy, jealousy, love or sympathy which make up our all too human nature. This is an important book for philosophers but since most of its illustrative material comes from an astonishing range of British and European literature, it is required reading also for literary scholars, or indeed for anyone with an interest in understanding who and what we are. David Ellis, University of Kent Human beings are all subject to boundless flights of joy and delight, to flashes of anger and fear, to pangs of sadness and grief. We express our emotions in what we do, how we act, and what we say, and we can share our emotions with others and respond sympathetically to their feelings. Emotions are an intrinsic part of the human condition, and any study of human nature must investigate them. In this third volume of a major study in philosophical anthropology which has spanned nearly a decade, one of the most preeminent living philosophers examines and reflects upon the nature of the emotions, advancing the view that novelists, playwrights, and poets – rather than psychologists and cognitive neuroscientists – elaborate the most refined descriptions of their role in human life. In the book’s early chapters, the author analyses the emotions by situating them in relation to other human passions such as affections, appetites, attitudes, and agitations. While presenting a detailed connective analysis of the emotions, Hacker challenges traditional ideas about them and criticizes misconceptions held by philosophers, psychologists, and cognitive neuroscientists. With the help of abundant examples and illustrative quotations from the Western literary canon, later sections investigate, describe, and disentangle the individual emotions – pride, arrogance, and humility; shame, embarrassment, and guilt; envy and jealousy; and anger. The book concludes with an analysis of love, sympathy, and empathy as sources of absolute value and the roots of morality. A masterful contribution, this study of the passions is essential reading for philosophers of mind, psychologists, cognitive neuroscientists, students of Western literature, and general readers interested in understanding the nature of the emotions and their place in our lives.

From the Many to the One

From the Many to the One


Freedom The End of the Human Condition

The poem raises the fundamental question involved in being human: how could the mean, cruel, indifferent, ... 1733); as were the ancient Greeks with their maxim that was written on the Temple of Apollo at Delphi, 'Man, know thyself.

Freedom  The End of the Human Condition

FREEDOM has its own very informative website: visit www.humancondition.com The fastest growing realization everywhere is that humanity can't go on the way it is going. Indeed, the great fear is we're entering endgame where we appear to have lost the race between self-destruction and self-discovery―the race to find the psychologically relieving understanding of our 'good and evil'-afflicted human condition. Well, astonishing as it is, this book by biologist Jeremy Griffith presents the 11th hour breakthrough biological explanation of the human condition necessary for the psychological rehabilitation and transformation of our species! The culmination of 40 years of studying and writing about our species' psychosis, FREEDOM delivers nothing less than the holy grail of insight we have needed to free ourselves from the human condition. It is, in short, as Professor Harry Prosen, a former president of the Canadian Psychiatric Association, asserts in his Introduction, 'The book that saves the world'. Griffith has been able to venture right to the bottom of the dark depths of what it is to be human and return with the fully accountable, true explanation of our seemingly imperfect lives. At long last we have the redeeming and thus transforming understanding of human behaviour! And with that explanation found all the other great outstanding scientific mysteries about our existence are now also able to be truthfully explained―of the meaning of our existence, of the origin of our unconditionally selfless moral instincts, and of why we humans became conscious when other animals haven't. Yes, the full story of life on Earth can finally be told―and all of these incredible breakthroughs and insights are presented here in this 'greatest of all books'.

The Human Condition

Arendt notes that the ancient Greeks,* to whom she turns so much, did not see forgiveness as a political virtue. Instead, she suggests that Jesus of Nazareth* made forgiveness a large part of political life.

The Human Condition

Hannah Arendt's 1958 The Human Condition was an impassioned philosophical reconsideration of the goals of being human. In its arguments about the kind of lives we should lead and the political engagement we should strive for, Arendt's interpretative skills come to the fore, in a brilliant display of what high-level interpretation can achieve for critical thinking. Good interpretative thinkers are characterised by their ability to clarify meanings, question accepted definitions and posit good, clear definitions that allow their other critical thinking skills to take arguments deeper and further than most. In many ways, The Human Condition is all about definitions. Arendt's aim is to lay out an argument for political engagement and active participation in society as the highest goals of human life; and to this end she sets about defining a hierarchy of ways of living a "vita activa," or active life. The book sets about distinguishing between our different activities under the categories of "labor," "work," and "action" - each of which Arendt carefully redefines as a different level of active engagement with the world. Following her clear and careful laying out of each word's meaning, it becomes hard to deny her argument for the life of "action" as the highest human goal.

The Emotions of the Ancient Greeks

David Konstan, however, argues that the emotions of the ancient Greeks were in some significant respects different from our own, and that recognizing these differences is important to understanding ancient Greek literature and culture.

The Emotions of the Ancient Greeks

It is generally assumed that whatever else has changed about the human condition since the dawn of civilization, basic human emotions - love, fear, anger, envy, shame - have remained constant. David Konstan, however, argues that the emotions of the ancient Greeks were in some significant respects different from our own, and that recognizing these differences is important to understanding ancient Greek literature and culture. With The Emotions of the Ancient Greeks, Konstan reexamines the traditional assumption that the Greek terms designating the emotions correspond more or less to those of today. Beneath the similarities, there are striking discrepancies. References to Greek 'anger' or 'love' or 'envy,' for example, commonly neglect the fact that the Greeks themselves did not use these terms, but rather words in their own language, such as orgê and philia and phthonos, which do not translate neatly into our modern emotional vocabulary. Konstan argues that classical representations and analyses of the emotions correspond to a world of intense competition for status, and focused on the attitudes, motives, and actions of others rather than on chance or natural events as the elicitors of emotion. Konstan makes use of Greek emotional concepts to interpret various works of classical literature, including epic, drama, history, and oratory. Moreover, he illustrates how the Greeks' conception of emotions has something to tell us about our own views, whether about the nature of particular emotions or of the category of emotion itself.

Philosophy Humor and the Human Condition

The tragic finds the par excellence form of its expression in literature, as evidenced by the variety of literary works exploring the tragic paradigm since the Ancient Greeks. Examples of the tragic sense of life in the literature and ...

Philosophy  Humor  and the Human Condition

This book presents an original worldview, Homo risibilis, wherein self-referential humor is proposed as the path leading from a tragic view of life to a liberating embrace of human ridicule. Humor is presented as a conceptual tool for holding together contradictions and managing the unresolvable conflict of the human condition till Homo risibilis resolves the inherent tension without epistemological cost. This original approach to the human condition allows us to effectively address life’s ambiguities without losing sight of its tragic overtones and brings along far-ranging personal and social benefits. By defining the problem that other philosophies and many religions attempt to solve in terms we can all relate to, Homo risibilis enables an understanding of the Other that surpasses mere tolerance. Its egalitarian vision roots an ethic of compassion without requiring metaphysical or religious assumptions and liberates the individual for action on others’ behalf. It offers a new model of rationality which effectively handles and eventually resolves the tension between oneself, others, and the world at large. Amir’s view of the human condition transcends the field of philosophy of humor. An original worldview that fits the requirements of traditional philosophy, Homo risibilis is especially apt to answer contemporary concerns. It embodies the minimal consensus we need in order to live together and the active role philosophy should responsibly play in a global world. Here developed for the first time in a complete way, the Homo risibilis worldview is not only liberating in nature, but also illuminates the shortcomings of other philosophies in their attempts to secure harmony in a disharmonious world for a disharmonious human being.