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Allan Cameron "An Rubhach" (Western Isles)

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Discourses and Selected Writings (Penguin Classics)
Discourses and Selected Writings (Penguin Classics)
by Epictetus
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One we should revisit, 30 May 2009
The morality of Greek philosophers was the antithesis of our modern one: they believed we should eschew all material desires, not because of some dictate of the heavens, but because they can never be satisfied and come to tyrannise us rather than make us happy. Like Epicurus, Epictetus believed that you had to implement your own philosophy so for his followers it became a quasi-religion. The quasi is justified by the fact that they never drifted away from rational thought. Read Epictetus on why we should not be angry when our neighbour steals from our house, and you will find his logic quite convincing.
His thoughts survive (mainly in the form written down by one of his students) because the Church found this Theistic philosopher acceptable, but he is now somewhat ignored.
This excellent new translation reads very well, and should encourage us to revisit this thinker.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 28, 2010 12:46 PM BST

The Sorrow Of War
The Sorrow Of War
by Bao Ninh
Edition: Mass Market Paperback

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A War Novel Without Hate, 9 Feb 2007
This novel is both a remarkable work of literature (most importantly the translation is of an unusually high quality) and an account of the misery of war by someone who had clearly experienced it first-hand. The author is not interested in ideological self-justification (perhaps that is not necessary, given the nature of the onslaught suffered by this small nation), and it is indeed a novel written in sorrow and not in anger. If someone were only to read two books on Vietnam and the related conflict in Cambodia, I would suggest this one and The Gate, a harrowing factual account by someone who against all odds came out of one of Pol Pot's death camps alive.

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