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Accueil > Publications > Ouvrages parus > Ouvrages des membres de SPHERE : 2015–... > Épicure aux enfers.

Épicure aux enfers.

Hérésie, athéisme et hédonisme au Moyen Âge

Aurélien Robert (CNRS, SPHere)

“Long before the Renaissance, medieval philosophers, doctors and theologians attempted to rehabilitate the figure of Epicurus and revive his thought. From the heretical to the model of life for the Christian, from the caricature of an atheist immoralist to the promotion of pleasure, Aurélien Robert follows the long construction of representations of Epicureanism, received and transformed in the Middle Ages. And thus delivers an unpublished portrait of medieval philosophy.
In Dante’s Divine Comedy, there is only one philosopher in the sixth circle of Hell, among the heretics : Epicurus. How a thinker who lived in the 4th century BC can he be judged like this ? By offering an archeology of representations of the Epicurean in the three great monotheistic religions, Aurélien Robert traces the long development of associations between Epicureanism and hedonism, atheism and heresy, and their transformation in the Middle Ages.

But this story hides another, which has remained in the shadow of an imposing religious literature. As early as the 12th century, attempts to rehabilitate the Greek philosopher appeared, almost three centuries before the rediscovery of Lucretia by Poggio Bracciolini. These testimonies from theologians, doctors and philosophers present Epicurus as a great sage, even a model for Christians. At the same time, his thought of pleasure gradually regained its prestige. Contrary to popular belief, it was not the Middle Ages that invented the epicurean caricature. Even more, it was during this time that attempts were made to save Epicurus and his philosophy from the underworld. "

"Research director at CNRS, former member of the French School of Rome, Aurélien Robert is a specialist in the history of philosophy of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. In 2019, he received the CNRS bronze medal for all of his work. ”

: : Publisher : Fayard
: : Series : Histoire
: : Released : 2021-02-24
: : 368 p.
: : Language : French
: : EAN : 9782213711744 (Code hachette : 6111311)
: : Digital EAN : 9782213713397