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Before the good life was reduced to ten easy steps, philosophers offered arresting answers to the most fundamental questions about who we are and what makes for a life worth living. In Examined Lives, James Miller returns to this vibrant tradition with short, lively biographies of twelve famous philosophers. From Plato, who risked his reputation to tutor a tyrant, to Nietzsche who tried to get to grips with the human condition before lapsing into catatonic madness, Miller lays out the lives of our greatest thinkers with flair and rich anecdotes. Confirming the continuing need for philosophy today, this book explores the most urgent questions about what it means to live a good life.
James Miller is a professor of politics and the chair of liberal studies at the New School for Social Research. He is the author of The Passion of Michel Foucault and has written for the New York Times and appeared several times on BBC Radio 4.