About the Books
In his Letter to Menoeceus, the ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus states that ‘death is nothing to us’. Few philosophers then or since have agreed with his controversial argument, upholding instead that death constitutes a deprivation and is therefore to be feared. Diverging from the current trend and sparking fresh debate, this book provides an imaginative defense of the Epicurean view of death. Drawing on Epicurus’s Principal Doctrines, Lucretius’s De Rerum Natura and Philodemus’s De Morte, David Suits argues that the usual concepts of harm, loss and suffering no longer apply in death, thus showing how the deprivation view is flawed. He also applies Epicurean reasoning to key issues in applied ethics in order to dispute the claim that there can be a right to life, to defend egoistic friendship, and to consider how Epicureanism might handle wills and life insurance. By championing the Epicurean perspective, this book makes a valuable contribution to the contemporary philosophical debate about death.