The Stoic Fellowship has curated a list of both ancient and modern
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The Stoa Poikile (Ancient Greek: ἡ ποικίλη στοά, hē poikílē stoá) or Painted Portico was a Doric stoa (a covered walkway or portico) erected around 460 BC on the north side of the Ancient Agora of Athens. It was one of the most famous sites in ancient Athens, owing its fame to the paintings and war-booty displayed within it and to its association with ancient Greek philosophy, especially Stoicism.¹
The Philosopher’s Toolkit: A Compendium of Philosophical Concepts and Methods by Julian Baggini and Peter Fosl. The Philosopher's Toolkit equips readers with all the intellectual ‘tools’ necessary for engaging closely with philosophical argument and developing fluency in the methods and language of philosophical inquiry. Featuring accessible explanations, practical examples, and expert guidance, this text empowers readers to understand traditional philosophical thinking and to engage with new ideas.
A Short Course in Intellectual Self-Defense: Find Your Inner Chomsky by Normand Baillargeon. What is the relationship between democracy and critical thinking? What must a citizen in a democracy know to make the word democracy meaningful? In A Short Course in Intellectual Self-Defense, historian and educator Normand Baillargeon provides readers with the tools to see through the spin and jargon of everyday politics and news reporting.
Thinking and Deciding by Jonathan Baron. A one-stop shop for modern rationality that covers the basics of deductive logic, probability, choice theory, and heuristics and biases.
Logic: A Very Short Introduction by Graham Priest. You may come away with more questions than answers from this book, and won’t necessarily get a great feel for the mechanics of modern logic, but you’ll get a great overview of what modern logic currently is.
How to Think About Weird Things by Theodore Schick and Lewis Vaughn. One of the more engaging textbooks to modern critical thinking.
Articles and Other Resources
Stoic Epistemology 101: Zeno and the metaphor of the hand movement by Massimo Pigliucci
A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson. The quest to understand everything that has happened from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization - how we got from there, being nothing at all, to here, being us.
What Is This Thing Called Science? by Alan F. Chalmers. The best introductory textbook on the philosophy of science.
The Meaning of It All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist by Richard P. Feynman. Many appreciate Richard P. Feynman's contributions to twentieth-century physics, but few realize how engaged he was with the world around him -- how deeply and thoughtfully he considered the religious, political, and social issues of his day.
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari. How did our species succeed in the battle for dominance? Why did our foraging ancestors come together to create cities and kingdoms? How did we come to believe in gods, nations and human rights; to trust money, books and laws; and to be enslaved by bureaucracy, timetables and consumerism?
Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. A groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. Kahneman exposes the extraordinary capabilities—and also the faults and biases—of fast thinking, and reveals the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behavior.
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan. How can we make intelligent decisions about our increasingly technology-driven lives if we don’t understand the difference between the myths of pseudoscience and the testable hypotheses of science?
Your Inner Fish: a Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body by Neil Shubin. Why do we look the way we do? What does the human hand have in common with the wing of a fly? Are breasts, sweat glands, and scales connected in some way? To better understand the inner workings of our bodies and to trace the origins of many of today's most common diseases, we have to turn to unexpected sources: worms, flies, and even fish.
Articles and Other Resources
“How now, Horatio?” The Stoic Joy of Physics and Friendship by Sherman J. Clark.
Do Stoic Ethics Depend On The Stoic Worldview? by Chris Gill.
Stoicism and the Environment by Chris Gill.
The Stoic God is Untenable in the Light of Modern Science by Massimo Pigliucci.
Breakfast with Seneca: A Stoic Guide to the Art of Living by David Fideler. The book mines Seneca’s classic works in a series of focused chapters, clearly explaining Seneca’s ideas without oversimplifying them. Best enjoyed as a daily ritual, like an energizing cup of coffee, Seneca’s wisdom provides us with a steady stream of time-tested advice about the human condition—which, as it turns out, hasn’t changed much over the past two thousand years.
A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy by William Irvine. A refreshing presentation of Stoicism, showing how this ancient philosophy can still direct us toward a better life. Using the psychological insights and the practical techniques of the Stoics, Irvine offers a roadmap for anyone seeking to avoid the feelings of chronic dissatisfaction that plague so many of us. Irvine looks at various Stoic techniques for attaining tranquility and shows how to put these techniques to work in our own life.
The Art of Living: The Classical Manual on Virtue, Happiness and Effectiveness by Sharon Lebell. By putting into practice the ninety-three witty, wise, and razor-sharp instructions that make up The Art of Living, readers learn to successfully meet the challenges of everyday life and face life's inevitable losses and disappointments with grace.
How to Be a Stoic: Using Ancient Philosophy to Live a Modern Life by Massimo Pigliucci. A personal introduction to Stoicism, the ancient philosophy that inspired the great emperor Marcus Aurelius, as the best way to attain it. Stoicism is a pragmatic philosophy that focuses our attention on what is possible and gives us perspective on what is unimportant.
A Handbook for New Stoics: How to Thrive in a World Out of Your Control—52 Week-by-Week Lessons by Massimo Pigliucci and Gregory Lopez. Stress often comes from situations that are beyond our control—such as preparing for a meeting, waiting for test results, or arguing with a loved one. But we can control our response to these everyday tensions—through the wisdom and practice of Stoicism. Stoicism is an ancient pragmatic philosophy that teaches us to step back, gain perspective, and act with intention.
How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius by Donald Robertson. Robertson weaves the life and philosophy of Marcus Aurelius together seamlessly to provide a compelling modern-day guide to the Stoic wisdom followed by countless individuals throughout the centuries as a path to achieving greater fulfillment and emotional resilience.
Lessons in Stoicism: What Ancient Philosophers Teach Us about How to Live by John Sellars. What aspects of your life do you really control? What do you do when you cannot guarantee that things will turn out in your favor? And what can Stoicism teach us about how to live together?
The Morality of Happiness by Julia Annas. Ancient ethical theories, based on the notions of virtue and happiness, have struck many as an attractive alternative to modern theories. But we cannot find out whether this is true until we understand ancient ethics--and to do this we need to examine the basic structure of ancient ethical theory, not just the details of one or two theories.
A New Stoicism by Lawrence C. Becker. What would Stoic ethics be like today if Stoicism had survived as a systematic approach to ethical theory, if it had coped successfully with the challenges of modern philosophy and experimental science?
The Structured Self in Hellenistic and Roman Thought by Christopher Gill. A new analysis of what is innovative in Hellenistic - especially Stoic and Epicurean - philosophical thinking about selfhood and personality.
Stoicism and Emotion by Margaret Graver. On the surface, Stoicism and emotion seem like contradictory terms. Yet the Stoic philosophers of ancient Greece and Rome were deeply interested in the emotions, which they understood as complex judgments about what we regard as valuable in our surroundings.
The Inner Citadel: The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius by Pierre Hadot. The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius are treasured today - as they have been over the centuries - as an inexhaustible source of wisdom. And as one of the three most important expressions of Stoicism, this is an essential text for everyone interested in ancient religion and philosophy. Yet the clarity and ease of the work's style are deceptive. Pierre Hadot, eminent historian of ancient thought, uncovers new levels of meaning and expands our understanding of its underlying philosophy.
Cambridge Companion to the Stoics edited by Brad Inwood. The volume offers an odyssey through the ideas of the Stoics in three ways: through the historical trajectory of the school itself and its influence; the recovery of the history of Stoic thought; and finally, the ongoing confrontation with Stoicism.
The Role Ethics of Epictetus: Stoicism in Ordinary Life by Brian Johnson. The book offers an original interpretation of Epictetus's ethics and how he bases his ethics on an appeal to our roles in life. Epictetus believes that every individual is the bearer of many roles from sibling to citizen and that individuals are morally good if they fulfill the obligations associated with these roles.
Epictetus: A Stoic and Socratic Guide to Life by A.A. Long. The philosophy of Epictetus, a freed slave in the Roman Empire, has been profoundly influential on Western thought: it offers not only stimulating ideas but practical guidance in living one's life. A. A. Long, a leading scholar of later ancient philosophy, gives the definitive presentation of the thought of Epictetus for a broad readership.
The Roman Stoics: Self, Responsibility, and Affection by Gretchen Reydams-Schils. The book reexamines the philosophical basis that instructed social practice in friendship, marriage, parenting, and community life. From this analysis, Stoics emerge as neither cold nor detached, as the stereotype has it, but all too aware of their human weaknesses.
The Art of Living: The Stoics on the Nature and Function of Philosophy by John Sellars. The book considers the Socratic background to Stoic thinking about philosophy and Skeptical objections raised by Sextus Empiricus, and offers readings of late Stoic texts by Epictetus and Marcus Aurelius.
Stoicism By John Sellars. This book is a great introduction into many Stoic philosophers and their ideas. It is easily accessible for the average reader and provides good historical context. It covers the three main branches of Stoic theories and explores many other popular Stoic ideas such as the Dichotomy of control.
Articles and Other Resources
Is Stoic Virtue as Off-Putting as it Seems? by Julia Annas.
Marcus on the Dichotomy of Value and Response by Chris Gill.
What is Stoic Virtue? by Chris Gill.
The Dispassionate Life by Margaret Graver.
Living as if Your Life Depended on It: Choosing a Philosophical Life by Sharon Lebell.
Stoicisms Ancient and Modern by Tony (A.A.) Long.
Updating Epictetus And Stoicism For the 21st century by Massimo Pigliucci.
Epictetus, Anger Management, and Habit by Greg Sadler.
Stoicism, Erotic Love, and Relationships by Greg Sadler.
What Does “In Accordance With Nature” Mean? by Greg Sadler.
Hard Truths and Happiness by John Sellars.
Stoic Wisdom: Moral Injury and Stoic Resilience by Nancy Sherman.
What Many People Misunderstand about the Stoic Dichotomy of Control by Michael Tremblay.
Star Trek’s Stoics: The Vulcans by Steven Umbrello.
How to Think Like Musonius Rufus (And Memorize His Lectures) by Kevin Vost.
To be Happier, focus on what’s within your control. By Massimo Pigliucci