Francesca G. Masi’s 58-page study of Attila Németh’s Epicurus on the Self, Routledge (2017) has been just published in Syzetesis, and is available online.

This occasion provides the opportunity to present the impact of the monograph so far, which was also published in paperback in 2020.

“Németh’s book is an original and valuable contribution to our understanding of Epicureanism, exploring Epicurus’ notion of the self in a comprehensive manner, throwing light on its many different aspects: physical, psychological, epistemic, moral, and spiritual. To my knowledge, this is the only published study to undertake and successfully accomplish such a broad task.”

– Voula Tsouna, University of California at Santa Barbara

“This monograph represents a very significant body of independent work, re-evaluating in a constructive and supportive spirit some central areas of Epicurean philosophy – notably self-cognition, agent autonomy and friendship – and displaying probable interconnections among those areas that have remained unnoticed or at least under-exploited in the existing scholarship. This is a considerable achievement. ...Chapter 1’s bold reconstruction, from very fragmentary textual material that is rarely made accessible to readers, of an Epicurean theory of self-cognition breaks a good deal of new ground; and the novel approach to Epicurean friendship in chapter 5 is both philosophically and historically attractive. ...What this monograph offers is a major new set of perspectives on current debates, able to reshape, challenge and enrich future discussions.”

– David Sedley, University of Cambridge

“The topic is a good one and Németh makes some interesting and important new claims, bringing together discussions of Epicurean moral psychology, ethical improvement and moral responsibility in a way that shows the integrated and holistic nature of the Epicurean system. ...Németh makes good use of difficult evidence from Nat. XXV, perhaps for the first time showing what can be done with it beyond the well-worn topic of moral responsibility. ...Németh also has interesting and often novel things to say about some other central questions in Epicureanism, such as the atomic swerve.”

– James Warren, University of Cambridge

“Overall, Epicurus On the Self's is an important contribution to scholarship on Epicureanism. It will be essential reading for scholars of Epicurean philosophy of mind and the history of the idea of the self. It will also be useful for those working on Hellenistic psychology and ethics more generally.”

– Pamela Zinn, Texas Tech University, Syzetesis 2018

“Németh’s Epicurus on the Self offers an original and engaging study of self-constitution, self-knowledge and agency in Epicurus … Epicurus on the Self is a step forward in our understanding of Epicurus’ moral psychology … Németh’s book has a lot to offer and he is a relentlessly astute and honest reader of the texts.”

– David Merry, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany, Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2018

Further reviews:

Hirschi, Solmeng-Jonas. “A. Németh, Epicurus on the Self.” Classical Review 68 / Issue 2, 2018, pp. 374-376.

Verde, Francesco. “A. Németh, Epicurus on the Self. London-New York: Routledge, 2017, 226,” Rhizomata – A Journal for Ancient Philosophy and Science, vol. 6 / Issue 2, 2018, pp. 236-244.

Piergiacomi, Enrico. “Fisica ed etica del «sé» in Epicuro?” Cronache Ercolanesi, 48, 2018, pp. 51-65.

Lautner, Péter. “Németh, Attila, Epicurus on the Self. Issues in Ancient Philosophy.” In: Filozofia, vol. 75/1, 2020, pp. 65-6.

Kovács, Attila D. “Epicurus from self-perspective.” Elpis, vol. 22, 2020/1, pp. 141-9. (In Hungarian.)