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Readers' Advisory: A Guide to the Good Life: Home

Readers' Advisory

Readers’ Advisory

Shelley Marcus, Professor, Reference Librarian, Chaffey College

A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy

A Guide to the Good Life – The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy

by William B. Irvine. Oxford University Press. 2009.

Welcome to Readers’ Advisory!  Did you know that reading for pleasure increases student and all-around success?

In a breezy and often humorous style, philosophy professor William B. Irvine plumbs the wisdom of the ancient Romans to reveal solutions to our modern problems.  Dismiss any preconceptions of the word “stoic” you may have, and get ready to experience more joy in life, courtesy of Seneca, Musonius Rufus, Epictetus and Marcus Aurelius.

This is one of the 250,000 eBooks in our library collection, available 24/7.  You can come back to it any time you like.

Some thoughts to delve into from the ancient philosophers:

  • “negative visualization” – imagine the loss of good things in our lives as a way of not taking them for granted.
  • “the dichotomy of control” – divide life’s occurrences into those over which we do or do not have control.
  • Make the most of each day as if it were your last.

Learn the Stoic rules of life including tips on self-awareness; overcoming negative emotions; dealing with insults; avoiding worry; enjoying good fortune without guilt.

Marcus Aurelius shares advice on the importance of prizing only things of true value.

Epictetus gives us valuable insight on how to be more content with what we have.

Here is a brief video that will introduce the book, and show how to access all eBooks.

A Guide to the Good Life – The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy video review

Here is the permalink to A Guide to the Good Life.

Questions or comments? Contact me at

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