Mar 17, 2016

Free Online Resources on Epictetus' Stoic Philosophy

Since the beginning of my career, in my first Ethics class as a graduate student, I have been teaching Epictetus' Stoic philosophy.  At the beginning, I concentrated on his short handbook, the Enchiridion Once I discovered just how much of a richer Stoic perspective the four books of his Discourses (those we currently possess - there may have originally been eight) contribute, I shifted my focus towards introducing students to key passages from that work.

Last Fall, I designed, produced, and then taught an experimental open-access 4-week online course on Epictetus' Discourses for the Global Center for Advanced Studies (an institution I've since resigned and dissociated myself from), donating the course free of charge both for the learners and for that institution.  (As a side-note, I'll be teaching that course again, in an expanded 6-week version this coming Fall, this time hosting it through my company, ReasonIO.)

Building that class was a particularly fruitful exercise for a variety of reasons, the most salient of which here are that - because of the way I structure online courses - it involved me in creating a lot of resources on Epictetus for my students, some of which I've aggregated and linked to here for anyone who would like to check them out or use them.  (As another side-note, someone might ask: Why are you giving people those resources here?  Won't that discourage them from signing up for your class later on? There's a simple answer for that:  People sign up to take classes specifically with me because in the class site, I provide them with even more than what's here, and I hold weekly online class sessions as well.)

In any case, here's the resources - 14 handouts and 45 videos - developed for that class.  If you find them useful or enjoyable, feel free to comment below - and watch for the full class offered this Fall!

Handouts - Stoicism more generally:

Handouts - Epictetus' Discourses

Core Concept Videos on Epictetus' Discourses

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