On the Happy Life – The Complete Dialogues
Read by Ric Jerrom
In his dialogues the Stoic philosopher Seneca outlines his thoughts on how to live in a troubled world. Tutor to the young emperor Nero, Seneca wrote practical philosophical exercises that draw upon contemporary Roman life and illuminate the intellectual concerns of the day. The dialogues also have much to say to the modern reader, as they range widely across subjects such as the shortness of life, tranquillity of mind, anger, mercy, happiness, and grief at the loss of a loved one. Seneca’s accessible, aphoristic style makes his writing especially attractive as an introduction to Stoic philosophy, and belies its reputation for austerity and dogmatism.
Running Time: 14 h 30 m
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Digital ISBN: 978-1-78198-346-1 Cat. no.: NA0484 Produced by: Produced by Chris Barstow for Tall Story Audiobooks at The Perfumery Translated by: Aubrey Stewart BISAC: PHI002000 BIC: HPCA Released: May 21
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Seneca’s discourses on topics such as anger and happiness fall between self-help and philosophy, specifically stoicism. Narrator Ric Jerrom employs his admirable English accent and sonorous voice almost musically to render the sense and tone of the text with care and comprehension. He injects emotion, such as anger, where appropriate and, in places, gives opinions in a tone that opposes Seneca’s sneering unpleasantness. But mostly Jerrom keeps to a cultured voice imbued with good will and reason. At times, his rounded tones and didactic manner do the text a disservice by emphasising Seneca’s tendency toward sententiousness. But his narration is generally so intelligent and rich that any faults seem more an embarrassment of riches than failings. A thought-provoking, even helpful, classic gets classic – and classy – treatment.