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Title: Diogenes in his own time
Author: Sieben, Karen
ISNI:       0000 0004 7431 6593
Awarding Body: University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Current Institution: University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Date of Award: 2018
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The advancement of the ideas of Plato an Aristotle on the one hand and the Stoics on the other overshadowed the view of the Cynicism of Diogenes which chronologically served as a bridge between them, historically rendering Cynicism for much of its history nothing more than a stopgap. The purpose of this thesis is to show that Diogenes' philosophy was not a stopgap, but rather a viable alternative to the major philosophies which paid it little heed. The use of historical and etymological analysis on trusted sources puts Cynicism in a clearer light. It demonstrates first, that Diogenes' life was an experiment in "plainness of living " which led him to adopt a natural lifestyle akin to the traditional Greek way of life. Second, it reveals that a natural way of life caused him to reject new conventional norms, which he believed encouraged acquisitiveness, class distinction s and licentiousness thereby undermining the youth. And third, over time Diogenes developed his own philosophy, which focused on freedom of speech or parrhesia, self-sufficiency and autonomy - ideals,which attracted modern philosophers, like Rousseau, Nietzsche, and Foucault. I conclude that a better reading of Diogenes displays an intelligent and witty philosopher who lived as he spoke. His criticism of conventional Athenian norms took the form of humorous satire and entertained as well as instructed, and in that practice he became a man of parrhesias- a truth-teller who could be counted on to uphold the truth even in dangerous situations. This took courage, which the stories about him are quick to point out. Thus, Diogenes'Cynicism as a way of life in which one develops the character and courage to speak truly is a necessary companion to any philosophy in any age, not only his own.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: B Philosophy (General)