Plato's Podcasts: The Ancients' Guide To Modern Living

Overview


Do you ever get the feeling that something went wrong? What with credit crunches, the war on terror, and unemployment, it is natural to hark back to less complicated times. In this witty and inspiring book, Mark Vernon does just that. However, he doesn’t just look back to the 1980s – try 400BC! Filled with timeless insight into life, relationships, work and partying, Plato's Podcasts takes a sideways glance at modern living and presents the would-be thoughts of Ancient Philosophers on various topics central to ...
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Plato's Podcasts: The Ancients' Guide to Modern Living

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Overview


Do you ever get the feeling that something went wrong? What with credit crunches, the war on terror, and unemployment, it is natural to hark back to less complicated times. In this witty and inspiring book, Mark Vernon does just that. However, he doesn’t just look back to the 1980s – try 400BC! Filled with timeless insight into life, relationships, work and partying, Plato's Podcasts takes a sideways glance at modern living and presents the would-be thoughts of Ancient Philosophers on various topics central to our 21st century existence. With a zany cast of characters – from the Gymnosophists (the naked philosophers) to Diogenes, who lived in a barrel – this is a humorous but enlightening manual to living well today (and two thousand years ago). Mark Vernon is a writer, journalist, broadcaster, academic, and former priest. Author of numerous books including Wellbeing and What Not to Say, he is an Honorary Research Fellow at Birkbeck College, University of London, UK, and a frequent contributor for BBC radio and the BBC webportal.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this solid, mercifully accessible account of 20 ancient thinkers, U.K. author and journalist Vernon (What Not to Say) makes philosophy enlightening, engaging, and relevant by taking a fresh look at its roots: "Very many ordinary people-not just men, but women and slaves-dedicated themselves to such matters. Philosophy was about what you ate, how you had sex, where you lived. Get those choices right and think less squiffily too, and it promised the good life." As such, Vernon connects each of the 20 philosophers to a modern-day concern. Zeno of Citium, for example, helps readers consider the psychology of shopping by way of stoicism, while Aristippus and his more-is-more philosophy of hedonism make him the go-to guy for an approach to pleasure-seeking. Among the standard list of dead white males (beginning with Plato and ending with Socrates), Vernon also highlights three notable woman philosophers, Sappho, Diotima and Hypatia, with worthwhile thoughts on love, warfare and paying attention. B&W photos.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781851687060
  • Publisher: Oneworld Publications
  • Publication date: 12/15/2009
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 5.29 (w) x 7.97 (h) x 0.67 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 10, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Handy Greek Philosophy/21 Century applications survey

    With a nod toward the dangers of vanity, I like to pride myself as rarely allowing opportunity to be bored. Standing in lines, waiting nearby while my wife checks a store are among familiar scenarios. I always keep a newspaper or news magazine handy, but books like Plato's Podcast are especially effective armor against boredom. I keep it in the back seat of my car for useful moments. The genre is established: a philosopher or writer applies thoughts by selected ancient philosophers or religious outlook to life's all too common situations and irritations. This volume is among the better available, connecting ancient Greek philosophers to known people living today. Each selection makes the philosopher human, warm, familiarly flawed, often humorously portrayed. Every small segment provides much for you to drink from along with easily fitting under your arm or in a slightly large pocket. Most importantly, it is much less demanding of your immediate attention than any electronic device no matter how small. You don't have to worry about turning it off in a theater or doctors' office. It won't buzz, beep, vibrate or otherwise demand your own instant response when something else in sight/hearing range is likely better. Buy it. Keep it handy.

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