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Lives of the Stoics: The Art of Living from Zeno to Marcus Aurelius by [Ryan Holiday, Stephen Hanselman]

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Lives of the Stoics: The Art of Living from Zeno to Marcus Aurelius Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 2,022 ratings

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Editorial Reviews


"Whether you're a general or a gardener, a stockbroker or a senator, there is much to learn from Ryan Holiday’s excellent Lives of the Stoics."
--Senator Ben Sasse

"There is philosophy for school and philosophy for life. This book is about the lives of men and women who 
lived their words and shows you how to do the same."
--Thomas Tull, founder of Legendary Entertainment
"The Stoics were more than just thinkers. They were athletes and generals and emperors and husbands and daughters and parents. This is a wonderful book that shows you the lives behind the philosophers whose words have shaped the world."
--Chris Bosh, 2x NBA Champion
“In story after page-turning story,
Lives of the Stoics brings ancient philosophers to life. And that is exactly what they would have wanted, because Stoicism is not a thought experiment but rather a guide for living. Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman show us how the masters succeeded — and sometimes failed — at turning theory into practice."
--David Epstein, New York Times bestselling author of Range

“In a time of pandemic and economic turmoil, we are all asked to be stoic. Lives of the Stoics is a great place to begin. It entertainingly, and yet thoughtfully, introduces us to the philosophers – and mere human beings – who shaped ideas that guide us over 2,000 years later. A great read, particularly for a tough time.”  
--Gen. Stanley McChrystal, author of Team of Teams

“Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman have achieved something remarkable with Lives of the Stoics. It's a gift to the many of us today who are searching for inspiration and sense a deep connection with the thought of Zeno, Cato, Seneca, Epictetus, and Marcus Aurelius. At last the story we needed has been told! Indispensable to anyone who genuinely wants to learn about Stoic philosophy."
--Donald Robertson, author of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor     

“Holiday and Hanselman (coauthors of
The Daily Stoic) explain in this stellar work the implications of Stoic dedications to truth, wisdom, resilience, and character...This illuminating collection of biographies makes great use of Stoic wisdom to demonstrate the tradition’s values for any reader interested in ancient philosophy.”
--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“An introductory guide to the luminaries of Greco-Roman ethical philosophy….Thoughtfully complicates Stoicism. Rather than emphasizing Spock-like, unemotional rigor (as pop culture often does), the authors reveal how the philosophy often debated its identity.…At a time when public nobility is hard to come by, this is a good reminder of the power of ethical leadership.” 
--Kirkus Reviews Review

Editors' pick: Mini biographies of the Stoics illustrate how the virtues of Courage, Temperance, Wisdom, and Justice can inform our lives today."—Chris Schluep, Amazon Editor
--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B083HL8RLK
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Portfolio (September 29, 2020)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ September 29, 2020
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 32939 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 348 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 2,022 ratings

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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
2,022 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on October 6, 2020
350 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on October 4, 2020
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Reviewed in the United States on September 30, 2020
47 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on October 1, 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Extensively researched and brilliantly written
Reviewed in the United States on October 1, 2020
Ryan Holiday’s new book, “Lives of the Stoics”, is an extensively researched and brilliantly written undertaking of the philosophy of Stoicism. Beginning with the founder, Zeno, and continuing forward with overlapping biographies of not only the Stoic roster of heroes, but lesser known practitioners, and some you might not recognize at all. This book humanizes these legendary figures, pulling them into the present, and making you realize they dealt with the same temptations and challenges, and made the same mistakes that we do today. “Lives of the Stoics” is a fantastic historical account of their lives, sprinkled with Stoic wisdom, and written in a way that allows you to grab new nuggets of information each time you revisit it. If you’re a practicing Stoic, this book is a must have for your library to add to all the other Stoic offerings from Ryan Holiday. If you’re new to the philosophy, or just curious, this book will give you an extremely solid foundation in Stoicism.
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15 people found this helpful
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Top reviews from other countries

David Birse
5.0 out of 5 stars A history of the lives of Stoicism.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 10, 2020
45 people found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars Learn the practical applications of Stoicism through 26 mini-biographies
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 4, 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Learn the practical applications of Stoicism through 26 mini-biographies
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 4, 2020
This is a great book that really brings to life the art of living the principles of Stoicism through 26 mini-biographies.

Ryan and Stephen have done a great job with their research to highlight the lives of these stoics. Whilst some of them are well known, there were many I had not come across and they range from being merchants, generals, writers, athletes, parents, professors, daughters and diplomats.

Each chapter starts with the Name, pronunciation, image and birth and death dates, starting with Zeno born in 334 BC and finishing off with Marcus Aurelius who was born in 121 AD. The chapters bring the essence of the life of each stoic. Ryan and Stephen mention in the Introduction that the aim hasn't been to have strict scholarly accuracy but actually bring out the moral lessons from the lives of each of the stoics. There is also a useful timeline at the end of the book to show the 500 years of Stoicism.

The book through each of the biographies, helps bring to life how the Stoic virtues of Courage. Justice. Temperance. Wisdom were lived by them. Interestingly it showed that many of the stoics did fall short of these values, they were tempted by wealth, made compromises, groped for fame, lost their temper, lied, were silent when they shouldn't have been and many other things. However, they teach through their choices why the virtues were important. You get to learn from their successes and failures. More importantly, it enables the reader to help apply philosophy to their own lives.

Given how 2020 has been for almost everyone, this is a great book to be able to understand the art of living no matter the circumstances and navigate a world with it's ups and downs. It is a great book for reflection and building your own understanding of how you want to live your life and the values you want to live by. I highly recommend the book.
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17 people found this helpful
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Joe Bathelt
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring and very readable
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 23, 2021
7 people found this helpful
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James Honeychuck
3.0 out of 5 stars Print is too small
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 3, 2020
11 people found this helpful
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Samuel Boardman
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book even for someone without much experience of stoicism
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 22, 2021
3 people found this helpful
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