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Harald Christian Thorsrud
New Mexico State University (Las Cruces, NM 88003-8002)

Faculty Research Awards
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$24,000 (approved)
$24,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2006 – 6/30/2006

Cicero's Ethics

Cicero embraces the Stoic view that knowledge is a harbor from the storms of fortune, and the means to happiness. Yet he also endorses the Academics' refutation of Stoic epistemology and remains skeptical with regard to how, or even whether, knowledge is possible. Thus the main problem I address in this book: How can philosophy achieve such great things if it does not succeed in fulfilling our desire for knowledge? In answering this question, I examine Cicero's portrait of Socrates as the model of both moral and epistemic virtue. I also discuss the ways in which Cicero adopts and modifies Stoic ethics in accordance with what he sees as our epistemic limitations.