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Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy, Volume 47$
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Brad Inwood

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198722717

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198722717.001.0001

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Galen on the Therapy of Distress and the Limits of Emotional Therapy

Galen on the Therapy of Distress and the Limits of Emotional Therapy

(p.275) Galen on the Therapy of Distress and the Limits of Emotional Therapy
Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy, Volume 47

David H. Kaufman

Oxford University Press

In his recently rediscovered On the Freedom from Distress (Περὶἀλυπίας), Galen argues for a sophisticated therapy of distress that incorporates three prominent and, in their original contexts, opposing methods of consolation. Despite their varied origins, the chapter argues that Galen integrates these distinct methods of therapy into a highly original and cogent, multi-tiered therapy of distress. Beyond its considerable interest for the ancient theory of emotional consolation, and for the ancient theory of the emotions more generally, Galen's resulting theory also illuminates several features of his philosophical methodology: most notably, his open-minded and appropriative stance towards other philosophical schools; the role of his own trained experience as a criterion for his philosophical views; and the significance that he places on the nature and upbringing of the audience of his philosophical works.

Keywords:   Galen, emotions, emotional therapy, consolation, Epicureanism, eclecticism, Posidonius, Stoicism, autobiography, heredity

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