How to Be a Pyrrhonist: The Practice and Significance of Pyrrhonian Skepticism

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Cambridge University Press, Mar 21, 2019 - Philosophy - 278 pages
What was it like to be a practitioner of Pyrrhonist skepticism? This important volume brings together for the first time a selection of Richard Bett's essays on ancient Pyrrhonism, allowing readers a better understanding of the key aspects of this school of thought. The volume examines Pyrrhonism's manner of self-presentation, including its methods of writing, its desire to show how special it is, and its use of humor; it considers Pyrrhonism's argumentative procedures regarding specific topics, such as signs, space, or the Modes; and it explores what it meant in practice to live as a Pyrrhonist, including the kind of ethical outlook which Pyrrhonism might allow and, in general, the character of a skeptical life - and how far these might strike us as feasible or desirable. It also shows how Pyrrhonism often raises questions that matter to us today, both in our everyday lives and in our philosophical reflection.
 

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Contents

What to Write If You Have
3
Why Care Whether Skepticism Is Different from
24
Humor as Philosophical Subversion Especially in the Skeptics
46
The Sign in the Pyrrhonian Tradition
69
Aenesidemus the AntiPhysicist
89
Theory and Practice
108
What Kind of Self Can a Greek Skeptic Have?
133
How Ethical Can an Ancient Skeptic Be?
151
Living as a Skeptic
168
On Pyrrhonism Stances and Believing What You Want
209
Can We Be Ancient Skeptics?
226
Bibliography
244
Index Locorum
255
Index
262
Copyright

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About the author (2019)

Richard Bett is Professor and Chair of Philosophy at The Johns Hopkins University. His translations of works by Sextus Empiricus include Sextus Empiricus: Against the Logicians (Cambridge, 2005) and Sextus Empiricus: Against the Physicists (Cambridge, 2012), and he is also the editor of The Cambridge Companion to Ancient Scepticism (Cambridge, 2010).

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