Stoics: Portraits of Integrity

Christopher Gill’s introduction to our Portraits of Integrity meeting on the Stoics is now available.


  • Christopher Gill, ‘Stoics on Integrity‘. The text of a lecture given at York University in 2014 which discusses these Stoic ideas and consider how they relate to modern moral theories and to questions we (moderns) might raise about these ideas.
  • Various passages from Stoic philosophical sources and from Marcus Aurelius and Epictetus (Stoic or Stoic-influenced writers).
  • Christopher Gill. Lecture notes 1: a study of the main philosophical argument of Cicero, On Duties3
  • Christopher Gill. Lecture notes 2: a study of the relationship between this work and Cicero’s political life in 44-43 at the time when he was deciding to challenge Mark Antony (a challenge that cost him his life- he was executed in 43 by Antony and others when they gained supreme power at Rome
  • Christopher Gill, ‘Marcus Aurelius: Philosophy and the Rest of Life’, in M. van Ackeren and J. Opsomer (eds.), Selbstbetrachtungen und Selbstdarstellungen: Der Philosopher und Kaiser Marc Aurel in interdisziplinären Licht. (Reichert, 2012), 35-64.


Background reading

  • John Sellars, Stoicism (Acumen, 2006), chapter 5, ‘Stoic ethics’. For a general introduction to Stoicism.
  • Oxford World Classics, Marcus Aurelius Meditations, trans. R. Hard, introduction and notes by C. Gill.
  • Cicero, Selected Works (Penguin Classics), trans. M. Grant, which contains On Duties 3 as well as letters by Cicero and his speech attacking Mark Antony (the Second Philippic).
Posted in Ancient Integrity, Integrity & Well-Being, Integrity, Speech & Action project, Portraits of Integrity, Speech & Action project, The Demandingness of Integrity: Saints & Monsters | Tagged , , ,

Hypocrisy or cynicism?

A comment piece by Giles Fraser in this week’s Guardian comparing hypocrisy to cynicism. Here’s an extract:

Hypocrisy is an accusation often levelled at two groups in particular: lefties and the religious. And the thing that both these groups have in common is that they both want to employ a moral vision to redesign the world. Which opens the possibility of professing a position that one fails fully to live up to – ie hypocrisy. Indeed, unless one is a saint, I cannot see how it is possible to be a Christian and not a hypocrite. To my mind, this hypocrisy is a near inevitable consequence of taking any sort of moral stand. Near inevitable, because there are (maybe) such people as saints, and whatever the lefty equivalent is, who fully live up to their best intentions. But for us mere mortals, François de La Rochefoucauld was right: “Hypocrisy is the homage vice pays to virtue.”

Full article here.

Posted in Religion & Integrity, The Demandingness of Integrity: Saints & Monsters | Tagged

Mapping Tyneside Radicalism

The ‘Histories of Activism’ group is currently putting together a website that maps moments of radical activity that have occurred on Tyneside since the seventeenth century. Mapping Tyneside Radicalism is designed to create a space where academics, researchers and local communities can work together to build a permanent memorial to the region’s tradition of radicalism and activism.

Posted in Institutions, Integrity and Reform: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives | Tagged , ,

Tristram Hunt and the language of modern politics

This article discusses Tristram Hunt’s recent Question Time appearance. Reflections relevant to our Integrity and Language theme. Here’s an extract: Continue reading

Posted in Language & Integrity, Speech & Action project | Tagged

Portraits of Integrity Conference

We are pleased to announce a 2-day conference, Portraits of Integrity, to take place in Newcastle on December 11-12th 2015. Further details and speakers to follow. Please do get in touch if you are interested in presenting your work, or would like to hear about ways to participate.

(N.B. The dates above are correct. They were erroneously published as 10-11th initially.)

Posted in Portraits of Integrity | Tagged ,

‘The Vile Ingredients’ of the ‘Wholesome Mixture’: A Portrait of Bernard Mandeville and Adam Smith

Leanne Stokoe’s introduction to our Portraits of Integrity meeting is now available.

Continue reading

Posted in Institutions, Integrity & Authenticity, Integrity and Reform: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives, Integrity in the Early Modern & Modern Era, Portraits of Integrity | Tagged , , , ,

30th January — Bernard Mandeville and Adam Smith workshop

The first Portraits meeting of the 2015 is next Friday, 30th January. We’re looking at Bernard Mandeville and Adam Smith with Dr Leanne Stokoe.

Readings and intro are all available here. Drop us a note if you’d like to join us, and take a look at our 2015 schedule here.

Posted in Institutions & Integrity, Institutions, Integrity and Reform: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives, Integrity in the Early Modern & Modern Era, Portraits of Integrity | Tagged ,

The Stoics on Integrity

Aim: to bring out the distinctive (and strong) features of Stoic ethics for analysing integrity; to explore the question how far this is an account we can not only learn from but would want to adopt today; to consider the intellectual problems or challenges in adopting the Stoic theory today.

Continue reading

Posted in Ancient Integrity, Portraits of Integrity | Tagged

January 30th 2015, Workshop on Bernard Mandeville and Adam Smith

Portraits of Integrity takes a Christmas break in December, but we will be back on January 30th with Leanne Stokoe (Newcastle University) convening a workshop on Bernard Mandeville’s Fable of the Bees. For more information click here.

Our February workshop is with Christopher Gill on the Stoics.

Please get in touch if you’d like to learn more about participating in the Portraits project or about the associated pod-casts and written material.

Posted in Integrity in the Early Modern & Modern Era, Portraits of Integrity | Tagged ,

Henry James: Portraits of Integrity

Danielle Petherbridge’s introduction to our Portraits of Integrity meeting on Henry James is now available.


  • Henry James, The Ambassadors, (New York: Modern Library, 2011); Chapter 1, Book First, pp. 5-19; Chapter 2, Book Second, pp. 65-83; Chapter 2, Book Fifth, pp. 174-186; Chapter 5, Book Twelfth, pp. 512-518.
  • Robert B. Pippin, “The ‘Strange Logic’ of Lambert Strether’s ‘Double Consciousness’,” in Henry James and Modern Moral Life, (Cambridge: University of Cambridge Press, 2000), pp. 147-170.

Further Reading:

  • Henry James, The Wings of the Dove, (New York: Modern Library, 2003).
Posted in Integrity & Authenticity, Integrity in Representing, Integrity in the Early Modern & Modern Era, Portraits of Integrity, Representations of Integrity, Integrity in Representing | Tagged , , ,