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Stoic Tragedy and the Sources of Human Ethics

February 20, 2023 @ 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

How should we cope with life’s vicissitudes? Do forces outside of our control impinge upon our ability to live meaningful and good lives? Are love and reason fundamentally at odds with each other? Ancient tragedy invites us to learn about ourselves and the world through suffering, and enables us to appreciate the fragility of human goodness. And tragedy written by a Stoic casts these existential issues in a new light.

The Department of Philosophy and the Department of Classics at UNC Chapel Hill are hosting a two-part discussion series at Flyleaf Books that will address these questions and more. Join us for a faculty-led introduction to the social and intellectual context of Greco-Roman tragedy, to the philosophical ideals of Stoicism, and to the humanizing role of theatre and the arts.

Session #1 (February 20th, 4:30 pm)
Stoic Tragedy and the Sources of Human Ethics

Session #2 (March 6th, 4:30 pm)
Seneca’s Medea: Spotlight on Human Ethics

Members of the community not affiliated with UNC are especially encouraged to attend, so please help spread the word by sharing the details about this event!

RSVP Here:

The sessions will be led by UNC Classics Dr. Al Duncan (Assistant Professor of Classics at UNC) and are co-organized by Michael Vazquez and Aurora Yu. Any questions can be directed to Michael ( and Aurora ( directly.

Registrants will receive copies of the readings in advance. All participants will also receive a complimentary anthology containing some of Seneca’s tragedies (Oxford World Classics).

This series is a prelude to a public and intergenerational event to be hosted this Spring at UNC-CH (March 27, 7 pm in Person Hall), which will feature a staged reading of Seneca’s Medea, followed by a community-wide and multigenerational discussion about the play’s philosophical and literary resonances. All are invited!

This program is hosted by UNC Philosophy and UNC Classics, and it is made possible by the generous support of our sponsors:

View the event flyer here.


February 20, 2023
4:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Event Category:


Flyleaf Books
752 M.L.K. Jr Blvd
Chapel Hill, NC 27514 United States
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