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Adam Nicolson – How to Be

How To Be
Adam Nicolson

October 18 @ 12:00 13:00

What is the nature of things? Must I think my own way through the world? What is justice? How can I be me? How should we treat each other?

Prize-winning and bestselling writer Adam Nicolson travels through the transforming world of ancient Greece and asks what light its thinkers can throw on our deepest preconceptions. Sparkling with maps, photographs and artwork, How to Be is a journey into the origins of Western thought.

Hugely formative ideas emerged: fluidity of mind, the search for coherence, a need for the just city, a recognition of the mutability of things, a belief in the reality of the ideal — all became the Greeks’ legacy to the world.

Before the Greeks, the idea of the world was dominated by god-kings their priests and imagined metaphysical monsters. Then, 2,500 years ago, in a succession of small eastern Mediterranean harbour-cities, that way of thinking began to change. Men (and some women) decided to cast off mental subservience and apply their own worrying and thinking minds to the conundrums of life.

These great innovators shaped the beginnings of philosophy. Homer explored how we might navigate our way through the world. Heraclitus in Ephesus was the first to consider the interrelatedness of things. Xenophanes of Colophon was the first champion of civility. In Lesbos, the Aegean island of Sappho and Alcaeus, the early lyric poets asked themselves ‘How can I be true to myself?’ In Samos, Pythagoras imagined an everlasting soul and took his ideas to Italy where they flowered again in surprising and radical forms.

Adam Nicolson is the author of many books on history, travel and the environment. He is winner of the Somerset Maugham Award and the British Topography Prize and lives at Sissinghust Castle in Kent.

£12.00
2 Bridport Road
Dorchester, Dorset DT1 1RR United Kingdom
01305 262045
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